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VOL. I. 




London: Printed by C. RowortU, 
Bell-yaru, Temple-bar^ 



^ofo^ 3| 


AS this Work is indebted to your revisal for 
much of its correctness, permit me to present 
to you, in its amended form, what you have 
so indulgently supported when its imperfec- 
tions were more numerous. Whether I con- 
sider you as a friend, whom I most esteem, 
or as a scholar best acquainted with this my 
favourite subject, I feel equally happy in an 
opportunity of thus publicly subscribing 

Your obliged 

and obedient Servant, 


Leicester Square, London, 
January 1st, 1814. 

2028670 , 


THE greater part of the Proverbs contained 
in these volumes, are taken from the edition 
of the Adaffia, published by Henry Stevens in 
the year 1550, in folio; but in the explication 
of them, it was found to be not unfrequently 
expedient, to deviate from the plan followed, 
and from the explanations given in that cele- 
brated publication. The reason for this will 
best appear, by giving a short history of that 
work, and by relating some peculiarities in 
the life of the author. 

Erasmus, who contributed largely to the 
restoration of letters in Europe, bestowed no 
small portion of labour in collecting together, 
and explaining the proverbs which he found 
scattered in the early Greek and Roman 
writers. The first edition of his collection 
A 3 was 


was published at Paris, in the year 1500, 
Erasmus being then thirty-three years of age. 
As the work was received with avidity, it M'as 
frequently reprinted in the life time of the 
author, and each time with additions, until 
the number of the proverbs exceeded four 

The credit the work then obtained, has 
never been diminished ; it still stands unri- 
valled, and has been the medium through 
which the greater part of the adages have 
been introduced into almost every country in 
Europe. But though they have by this means 
been introduced into this, and other countries, 
and many of them so incorporated, as to be 
in as frequent use, as those that arfe natives, 
yet they are no where, as far as I know, ac- 
companied with commentaries, or explanations, 
similar to those given by Erasmus, although 
such explanations seem necessary to make 
them generally understood. 

The brevity and conciseness of proverbs, 
in which their excellence in a great measure 
consists, renders them often obscure, and of 
difficult comprehension, " Siquidem/' Eras- 


mus says, " Aclagia, ceu gemmul, quod mi- 
nuta sint, fallunt nonnunquam venantis ocu- 
los, ni acrius intendas," the latent sense of 
them, like small sparks of diamonds, not un- 
frequently escaping the sight, if not diligently 
sought for, and even when found, he goes on 
to say, they are of themselves of little beauty, 
or lustre, deriving the principal part of their 
value from the manner of setting or using 

The method that seems to have been fol- 
lowed by Erasmus, in making this collection, 
was to note every adage he met with in the 
course of his studies, and as the same sentence 
occurred in different authors, to observe the 
sense in which it was used by each of them. 
He was hence enabled to enrich his work with 
quotations from many of the earliest Greek 
and Roman writers, and if not to refer each 
of the adages to its original author, at the 
least to name the earliest book in which it 
occurred. Of these quotations, though many 
of them are of exquisite beauty, and curiosity, 
but a sparing use has been made in the present 
collection, the places of them being more 
A 4 usually 


usually supplied by passages from later writers. 
Similar proverbs are also here frequently given 
in the Spanish, Italian, French, and English 

It has been before observed, that Erasmus 
contributed largely to the revival of letters, 

O / * 

but- he was no less assisting in promoting the 
reformation in religion, \vhich began in his 
time. The influence the clergy had obtained 
over the minds of the laity, had made them 
rich and powerful, which producing their 
usual effects, idleness and voluptuousness, 
a very large portion of them had become 
openly dissolute and profligate. Against these 
vices, Erasmus was perpetually declaiming, 
not sparing the higher orders in the church, 
who were, perhaps, the first in vice, as in 
dignity. In his humorous and satvrical de- 

35 . ~ 

clamation, Glorias Encomium, or the Praise 
of Folly ; in his dialogues, and letters, and in 
his prefaces to his editions of the Works of 
the Fathers, he lets no opportunity pass, of 
exposing and censuring the debaucheries and 
crimes of the monks and the clergy. In the 
work, the subject of the present dissertation, 



wherever the sense of the adage would bear it, 
similar strictures are abundantly scattered. 

By these censures so frequently passed on 
the conduct of the clergy, the minds of the 
people were prepared to receive the more 
serious and heavy charges, preferred against 
them by Luther, of having corrupted and 
perverted the Scriptures. Hence it was cur- 
rently said, " that Erasmus laid the egg, con- 
taining the germ of the Reformation, and 
Luther hatched it." This gave great offence, 
and may be reckoned among the reasons why 
though his works were universally read and 
admired, and procured him the patronage of 
persons of the highest rank, who were lavish 
in their professions of friendship, and fre- 
quently sent him presents, as testimonies of 
their attachment, yet he could never obtain 
from them such preferment, as would make 
him independent. It must be confessed, as 
he intimates in one of his letters to his friend 
Barbirius, that he was of too open a dispo- 
sition, and apt to give offence by speaking 
too freely. " Et ut ingenue, quod verum est 
tfitear," he says, "sum natura propensior ad 



jocos, quam fortasse deceat, et linguae libe- 
rioris, quam nonnunquam expediat." 

The enmity these strictures had excited, 
remained long after his death, " and the di- 
vines had influence enough with Pope Paul the 
fourth," Jortin tells us, " to have the Book of 
Adages condemned. But the Fathers of the 
Council of Trent, taking into consideration 
the usefulness of the work, ordered Paul us 
Manutius to revise it, and strike out every 
thing that was offensive." This garbled edi- 
tion was printed at Florence, in 1575, without 
the name of the author.* Fortunately, the 
original work had been too often printed, and 
was too generally disseminated to be by this 
means suppressed. 

With the censures, however, on the monks 
and clergy, and with various other strictures, 
alluding to circumstances which have long 
ceased to exist, we have no concern. The 
places of them are here supplied by reflections 
and observations of a more general nature, 
and better adapted to the present times. 

* A copy of this edition was sold in the sale of the late 
Duke of Roxborough's library, in May 1S12, lor .1 -18-0. 



Having given this account of the sources 
whence the adages here treated are taken, it 
may not be thought improper to add some 
general observations on the nature of prover- 
bial sentences. A proverb may be defined, a 
short figurative expression or sentence, cur- 
rently used, commending or reproving the 
person or thing to which it is applied, and 
often containing some moral precept, or rule, 
for our conduct in life. Loose as this defini- 
tion may appear to be, it is not sufficiently so 
to embrace every form of speech that has been 
admitted by Erasmus, and our countryman 
Ray, as proverbs. A few examples may make 
this more intelligible. A proverb frequently 
consists with them in a simple comparison. 
Of this kind are, ' As tall as the monument," 
"As swift as Achilles," "As crafty as Ulysses," 
" As cunning as a fox." All that is required in 
forming this species of adage is, that the per- 
son or thing used as a comparison be generally 
known, or reputed ^to possess the property 
attributed to it. Of another kind, as proceed- 
ing from observations on the diversities in 
the dispositions and tempers of men, are 

" Quot 


" Quot homines tot sentential," many men, 
many minds. " Parva leves capiunt animos," 
" Light minds are pleased with trifles," and 
" Suus cuique mos est." Each man has his 
peculiarities or manners, by which, in fact, 
they are not less distinguished from others, 
than by their faces and figures. Of a higher 
kind are those containing some moral precept, 
or rule, for our conduct in life, as, "Feras non 
culpes quod vitari non potest," what can't be 
cured must be endured." " Homini ne fidas, 
nisi cum quo modium salis absumpseris," trust 
no man until you have eaten a peck of salt 
with him ; that is, until you have known him 
so long, that you might have eaten a peck of 
salt with him. " Mus non fidit uni antro,'' 
the mouse does not trust to a single passage 
by which it may escape, if attacked. No 
man should engage all his property, or so 
much as might materially injure him, if it 
should be lost in one vessel, or on a single 
project; "he should take care to have two 
strings to his bow." These specimens may be 
sufficient to shew the nature of proverbial 
phrases, and in some degree, the kind of elu- 
cidation here attempted. 



As the source whence the adages are taken 
is shewn to be ample, it may be thought that 
a much larger collection might have been 
given than is here produced ; " At boni vena- 
tons est plures feras capere, non omnes," a 
good sportsman is not expected to take alt the 
game he may start. It might not have been 
difficult, perhaps, had that been thought ex- 
pedient, to have considerably increased the 
number ; but short as this collection may ap- 
pear, there will be found in it, under various 
heads, observations applying to all the ordi- 
nary occurrences and situations in life; which 
will be the more readily listened to, it may be 
expected, as they contain the sentiments 
transmitted clown to us from the earliest ages 
of the most celebrated sages and philosophers. 
Should it be urged, that many of the observa- 
tions are such as would occur to every well 
educated and sensible man, let those to whom 
they are superfluous pass them over, they 
were not written for them ; " those who are 
well need not a physician, but those who are 
sick :" yet even to them it may not be a matter 
of total indifference to learn that so many of 



the adages and forms of speech in daily use 
among us are derived from the Grecians, and 
that the origin of them may be traced back 

CJ v 

for two thousand and more years. But should 
they reject them altogether, the work may 
still have its utility : the young and inexpe- 
rienced may find in it that information, which 
those more advanced in life cannot, or ought 
not, to want; it may lead them to consult the 
books from which the quotations are taken, 
many of them not commonly put into their 
hands, and to pay more attention than is 
usually done to the languages of modern 
Europe, which will be equally pleasant and 
bene6cial ; and from the present posture of 
affairs, it may be expected that the countries 
where they are spoken will be soon opened to 
us : and though the mass of the people in 
one of those countries have shewn themselves, 
in the course of the dreadful revolution that 
has taken place there, to be so frivolous, in- 
significant, and mischievous as to promise 
little advantage from mixing too intimately 
with them, yet there are not wanting a suffi- 
cient number of intelligent persons among 



them to make a communication with them 
desirable. It may be hoped also that the 
misery they have for so many years suffered, 
may have the effect of producing an alteration 
in their character. No symptom however of 
such a change, it should be observed, has yet 
appeared, notwithstanding the losses their 
country has sustained and the degradation of 
their ruler: a circumstance which should be 
well noted here, and prove a caution to our 
people from flocking over to that country, 
should the door be again, for a short time, 
opened, as they did on a former occasion, to 
their own destruction and to the disgrace of 
our national character. It should also, and 
will, it may be expected, lead our people of 
all ranks to have so much respect for them- 
selves and regard for the honour of their 
country, as to shew no slavish servility to. 
their envoys and ambassadors, that we may 
not again be insulted with the humiliating 
spectacle of British subjects harnessed to the 
chariot of aliens, and I doubt, I must say, of 
enemies to the country. Had such a scene 
been acted at Greece or Rome, the parties 



would never again have been acknowledged 
as citizens ; they would have been banished, 
perhaps sold as slaves, or even forfeited their 

Thus far I have endeavoured to shew the 
reader what he is to expect in these volumes; 
it may not be so easy, perhaps, satisfactorily 
to explain, why I have undertaken what seems 
so alien to my profession ; 

" Tantumne ab re tua est otii tibi, 

Aliena ut cures, ea quae nihil ad te attinent ? ;> 

Have I so much leisure, it may be asked, 
from my own employment, that I should en- 
gage in a business which might so much more 
properly be handled by those whose peculiar 
duty it is to give lessons in morality ? and yet 
this may not, on consideration, be deemed 
totally averse to the business of the physi- 
cian ; for as many diseases, almost all of the 
chronic kind, are brought on and perpetuated 
by irregularity of living and over indulgence 
of our passions, should any persons on read- 
ing what is here said on those subjects, con- 
taining the opinions of the earliest and best 
writers, be led to correct their vicious habits, 



one source of those maladies would be cut off, 
and they would become both less frequent 
and less fatal. 

It may not be improper, before concluding 
this address, to apprise the reader, that a de- 
sign of this kind was once in the contemplation 
of Dr. Johnson, as appears by the list of works 
he had proposed undertaking, given by Mr. 
Boswell at the end of his life. In what man- 
ner it would have been executed by him can- 
not be conjectured, doubtless in a way supe- 
rior to that in which it is treated here; and had 
it been accomplished, it would have superseded 
the present attempt : that a writer of his emi- 
nence had even entertained the idea of 
such a work, must be thought to give an ad- 
ditional degree of credit to the design itself. 

No attempt has been made, it will be ob- 
served, to arrange the proverbs in classes, or 
even to place them alphabetically. Their 
number was found to be too inconsiderable 
for classification ; and as an Index is given, 
the reader will be enabled to find what he 
looks for as readily as if they had been placed 
in alphabetical order. 



8$c. $c. #c. 

Amicorum communia omnia. 

AMONG friends all things should be in com- 
mon. Erasmus thought he could not begin 
his Collection better than with this apo- 
thegm, which is of great antiquity, and much 
celebrated, and for the same reason it is here 
placed first. Nothing is so frequent in our 
mouths, nor is any thing less common than 
such a conjunction of minds as deserves the 
name of Friendship. " When a friend asks, 
there is no to-morrow," for he is another self. 
" Ne ay major espejo, que el amigo viejo." 
Like a glass he will discover to you your own 
defects ; and " mas vale buen amigo, que 
pariente primo," a good friend is better than 
a near relation. A man, the Italians say, 
without friends is like a body without a soul. 


" Chi si trova senz' amici, e come un corpo 
senz' anima." The French, by a very delicate 
B phrase, > 

( 2 ) 

phrase, denominate friendship love that is 
without wings, " L'amitie" est 1'amour sans 
ailes," meaning that it should be a permanent 
affection, and not easily to be obliterated. 
" Ova d'un ora, pane d'un di, vino d'un 
anno, amico di trenta," that is, eggs of an 
hour, bread of a day, wine of a year, but a 
friend of thirty years is best; and " Azeyte, 
y vino, y amigo antiguo," oil, wine, and 
friends improve by age. Friendship, Mon- 
taigne says, " unlike to love, which is 
weakened by fruition, grows up, thrives, and 
increases by enjoyment; and being of itself 
spiritual, the soul is reformed by the practice 
of it." And according to Sallust, " Idem 
velle et nolle, ea demum firma amicitia est," 
to have the same desires and dislikes, to love 
or hate the same persons, is the surest test of 
friendship. But instances of such exalted 
friendship, if they do exist, are very rare. 
" Tantum ego fucorum, tantum perfidiae in 
hominum arnicitiis reperio, non in his modo 
vulgaribus, verurn his quoque quas Pyladeas 
vocant, ut mihi jam non libeat novarum peri- 
culum facere" I find so much dissembling, 


( 3 ) 

says the good Erasmus, so much perfidy 
among friends, not only those between whom 
there subsists only a slight intimacy, but those 
connected, as it would seem, by the strongest 
ties of affection, that I have altogether given 
up the search after such a phenomenon. The 
same writer, at a more advanced stage of his 
life, and as the result of long experience, says, 
" Quin in totum, e6 degenerarunt hominum, 
mores, ut hodie, cygnus niger, aut corvus al- 
bus, minus rarus sit avis, quam fidelisamicus." 
In short, men are become so degenerate, (a 
complaint that has been made in every age,) 
that a black swan, or a white crow, are not so 
rarely to be met with as a faithful friend. 
And another writer says, " We talk of friend- 
ship as of a thing that is known, and as we 
talk of ghosts but who has seen either the one 
or the other !" " Friendship," Lord Verulam 
says, " easeth the heart and cleareth the un- 
derstanding, making clear day in both; partly 
by giving the purest counsel, apart from our 
interest and prepossessions, and partly by al- 
lowing opportunity to discourse; and by that 
discourse to clear the mind, to recollect the 
B 2 thoughts, 

( 4 ) 

thoughts, to see how they look in words; 
whereby men attain that highest wisdom, 
which Dionysius, the Areopagite, saith ' is the 
daughter of reflection.'" Spenser gives a beau- 
tiful description of three kinds of affection, to 
women, to our offspring, and to our friend, 
and gives the preference to the latter. 

' For natural affection soon doth cess. 
And quenched is with Cupid's greater flame ; 
But faithful friendship doth them both suppress, 
And them with mastering discipline doth tame, 
Through thoughts aspiring to eternal fame. 
For as the soul doth rule the earthly mass, 
And all the service of the body frame, 
So love of soul doth love of body pass, 
No less than purest gold surmounts the meanest brass." 

Ne gustdris quibus nigra est Cauda. 

It is not known who was the Author of 
this enigmatical sentence, prohibiting to eat 
what has a black tail ; that which is sweet to 
the taste, but leaves a sense of bitterness when 
swallowed. The interpretation seems to be, 
hold no intimate connection with persons of 
bad fame, nor do any thing of which you 

may repent on reflection. 


Ne cumis Dextram injeceris. 

Offer not your hand to any one with whom 
you may casually associate. This is in fact 
only an extension of the sense of the first 
apothegm, by which we were admonished 
not lightly, or unadvisedly, to admit any one 
to an intimacy, " for with your hand you 
should give your heart." " Deligas enim 
tantum quern diligas," you should chuse as 
friends only such persons as are worthy of 
your love, and when you have found such, as 
Polonius advises his son Laertes, 

" Grapple them to thy soul with hooks of steel," 

for " amicus est magis necessarius quam ignis 
et aqua," a friend is more necessary to us than 
fire and water, without which, we know, we 
cannot even exist. From a want of making 


this selection, and of being well acquainted 
with the characters of the persons whom we 
admit to this intimacy, arises the frequent 
complaint of the perfidy of friends. " Qui 
sibi amicus est, scito hunc amicum omnibus 
esse," he who is a friend to himself is a friend 
B 3 to 

( 6 ) 

to every one to whom he professes to be so. 
If tli is apothegm of Seneca should not be 
admitted to its full extent, it will at the least 
be allowed, that he who is not a friend to him- 
self, should not be expected to be a friend to 
any one besides. For how should a man be 
a friend to strangers, who neglects what is 
necessary for the comfortable subsistence of 
himself and family ? In short, to be a friend 
it is necessary that a man should shew him- 
self to be a reasonable and a good moral man, 
fulfilling his duty to God, to his country, and 
to himself. Such a man, to adopt the lan- 
guage of Montaigne, " is truly of the cabinet 
council of the Muses, and has attajned to the 
height of human wisdom." If these rules in 
the choice of our friends be followed, few per- 
sons will have reason to complain of their 
faithlessness. If it should be said that such 
characters are rare, it then follows, that there 
are but few persons with whom we should 
enter into that close intimacy which is desig- 
nated by the term friendship. 


( 7 ) 

Cor ne edito. 

Let not care corrode and gnaw your heart, 
lest you should fall into a state of despon- 
dency, and to avenge some disappointment or 
trouble, throw away all the blessings you en- 
joy, and with them your life. To this pur- 
port the Psalmist, " Fret not thyself, lest thou 
be moved to do evil." " Por mucho madru- 
gar, no aman6ce mas aina." The Spaniards 
say, early rising makes it not day the sooner, 
or too much anxiety and care will not enable 
you the sooner to obtain your point; and the 
Italians, " cento carre di pensieri, non paga- 
ranno un' oncia di debito," an hundred cart- 
loads of care will not pay an ounce of debt. 
" Cura facit canos," care brings gray hairs, 
and " care," we say, " killed the cat." But 
who is without care, or can escape its fangs ! 
" Man that is born of a woman is of short con- 
tinuance, and full of trouble; all his days are 
sorrow, and his travels grief, his heart also 
taketh not rest in the night." And " you 
may as soon," Burton says, " separate weight 
from lead, heat from fire, moistness from wa- 
B 4 ter, 

( 8 ) 

ter, and brightness from the sun, as misery, 
discontent, care, calamity, and danger from 
man." Such being the state of man, and as 
we are assured, " that it is as natural for him 
to suffer, as for sparks to fly upwards," we 
should bear our afflictions with patience, by 
which alone the heaviest of them will be in 
some degree softened, and appeased. " Si 
gravis brevis, si longus levis." If the pain be 
very severe, it cannot last ; if it be moderate 
and of longer duration, it may be borne. 
" Nullum est malum majus, quam non posse 
ferre malum,'' no greater misfortune can 
happen to us, than not to be able to bear 

Ignem ne Gladio fodito. 

Do not stir the fire with a sword, do not 
irritate an angry person; rather endeavour to 
sooth and appease him, and take some more 
convenient opportunity for reproof. When 
no longer under the influence of passion, he 
may hear and be benefited by your remon- 

A Fabis 

( 9 ) 

A Fabis abstineto. 

Abstain from beans, was an admonition of 
Pythagoras to his followers; meaning by that 
to exhort them not to interfere in the election 
of magistrates, in which, it should seem, there 
was the same heat and contention, the same 
violence and confusion as too often occur 
among us, when persons are elected to places 
of honour, or profit. The electors among the 
Athenians were used to poll, or give their 
suffrages, by putting beans, instead of white 
or black stones as on other occasions, into a 
vase placed for the purpose. Pythagoras also 
admonishes, " when the wind rises, to worship 
the echo," that is in times of tumult and dis- 
sension, to retire into the country, the seat of 
the echo. 

Arctum Aniilum ne gestato. 

Do not wear a ring, or a shoe, we say, that 
is too tight, which may impede you in walk- 
ing, or in any other actions. Metaphorically, 
do not by imprudence waste your property, 


and contract debts, which will lead to the loss 
of your liberty; neither pay so much defe- 
rence to the opinions of others, as to embrace 
them implicitly, without first submitting them 
to a careful examination. Persons who are 
so tractable are said " to be led by the nose," 
and of such, artful men do not fail to take 
advantage. Also, be not ready to bind your- 
selves by vows, or oaths, to do, or to refrain 
from any act If the thing be proper in it- 
self, you will have sufficient incentive to do 
it, without laying such obligations or restric- 
tions upon yourself; the necessity for which 
can only arise from imbecility, or inconstancy 
of mind, which you should rather endeavour 
to cure than to indulge. 

Tollenti Onus auxiliare, de.ponenti mquaquam. 

Assist those who are willing to receive in- 
struction, and aid those who endeavour, but 
have not strength, to bear the load that is im- 
posed on them. First put thy shoulder to the 
wheel, and should thy utmost exertions prove 


( 11 ) 

ineffectual, then call upon the Gods, and they 
will help thee. 
" But they 're not wishings, or base womanish prayers 

Can draw their aid, but vigilance, counsel, action, 

Which they will be ashamed to forsake. 

Tis sloth they hate, and cowardice." 

" A quien madruga, Dios le ayoucla," the 
Spaniards say, God assists those who rise early 
in the morning, that is, those who are indus- 
trious ; and the French to the same purport, 
" Aide toi et Dieu t'aidera," help yourself and 
God will help you. " Industry," we say, " is 
Fortune's right hand, and frugality her left." 

Qua uncis sunt un^uibus ne nutrias. 


Do not feed, or take under your roof ani- 
mals of ferocious and savage dispositions, that 
have sharp and crooked claws. Do not che- 
rish a snake in your hosom, or enter into 
friendship with crafty and deceitful persons. 
" Otez un vilain du gibet, il vou's y mettra," 
save a thief from the gallows, and he will cut 
your throat. " Cria el cuervo, y sacarte ha 
Jos ojos," breed up a crow and he will tear out 


your eyes. Ingratitude and the unyielding 
bent of nature were typified by the Greeks 
under the elegant representation of a goat 
giving suck to the whelp of a wolf, with a 
subscription, which has been thus rendered. 

" A wolf reluctant with my milk I feed, 
Obedient to a cruel master's will; 
By him I nourish'd, soon condemned to bleed, 
For stubborn nature will be nature still." 

We may add two familiar lines to these, 

" The hedge-sparrow fed the cuckoo so long, 
That she had her head bit off by her young." 

Cibum in Matellam ne immittas. 


" Cast not the children's provision to the 
dogs." Talk not on moral or religious sub- 
jects before persons of loose manners, who 
are disposed to ridicule every thing that is 

grave and serious; neither enter into araru- 

, ' , . . 

ments with persons who are obstinate, or ig- 
norant; who are either incapable of under- 
standing, or predetermined not to adopt what 
you advise. 


( 13 ) 

Ad Finem ubi perveneris, ne veils reverti. 

When you have nearly completed any bu- 
siness in which you are engaged, do not 
through weariness, or inconstancy, leave it 
unfinished, but persist to the end ; else all the 
time, labour, and expense that have been be- 
stowed upon the work, will be lost, and you 
will lose your character likewise ; or when 
you perceive yourself about to die, with pa- 
tience and courage submit to your fate, and 
do not weakly and foolishly wish for an ex- 
tension of your life, in the vain hope that you 
should live more rationally. " Hell," we say, 
" is full of good meanings and wishes." 

" O mihi praeteritos referat, si Jupiter annos !" 

You knew that the term of your life was un- 
certain, and should long since have entered 
on the course you now propose to beg-in, but 
which, if the opportunity were given, you 
would probably neglect as heretofore. 


Adversus solem ne loquitor. 

Arguing against what is clear and self-evi- 
dent, is the same as denying that the sun 
shines at mid-clay. 

Hirundinem sub eodem tecto ne habeas. 

Take not a swallow under your roof, he 
only pays his visit in the spring, but when 
winter, the time of difficulty and hardships, 
approaches, he is gone. Entertain no one as 
a friend who seeks only his own advantage by 
the intimacy he solicits. The proverb is also 
supposed to intimate that we should not ad- 
mit chatterers to a familiarity with us, who 
will be sure to divulge whatsoever they may see 
or hear in our houses. " Percontatorem fugito, 
nam garrulus idem est." The swallow only 
comes, it is said, for his own purpose, and 
having produced and brought up its young, 
leaves us, without making any beneficial re- 
turn for the entertainment it has received. 
Though it is probable that by devouring my- 
riads of insects, which would have destroyed 


( 15 ) 

our fruit, they pay us abundantly for the sub- 
sistence afforded them. 

In Anulo Deifguram nc gestato. 

Do not wear the figure or image of the 
Deity in a ring: that is, do not introduce the 
name of the Deity in your frivolous and idle 
conversation, or call upon him to attest the 
truth of any assertions, except such as are of 
a grave and serious nature; still less make it 
the subject of your senseless and impertinent 

Non bene imperat, nisi qui paruerit imperio. 

Men are rarely fit to command, who have 
not been accustomed to obey. Children 
brought up too indulgently neither become 
agreeable companions, nor good masters. Ac- 
customed to find every one bending to their 
humours, and to have all their wishes grati- 
fied, they are ill qualified to mix with the 
world, and to encounter the thousand cross 


accidents, which every one, whatever may be 
their rank, will be sure to meet with. Every 
opposition to their will irritates, and every 
accident appals them. One of the strongest 
arguments in favour of our public schools is, 
that boys must there obey, before they are 
allowed to command. The proverb also in- 
timates, that no one is fit to govern others, 
who has not obtained a command over his 
own passions and affections. 

Inter Malleum et Incudem. 

I am between the hammer and .the anvil, 
I am so surrounded with evils, that I see no 
way of escaping, may be said by any one who 
has so involved and entangled himself in a 
business, that he must be a loser, whether he 
goes on or retreats. 

Res in Car dine est. 

The business is on the hinge : it is in that 
state that it must now, one way or the other, 


( 17 ) 

be soon terminated, alluding to a door, which, 
hanging on its hinges, may be shut or opened 
by a very slight impulse. We also say the 
business hinges (turns) on such a circum- 
stance ; if that be made out, it will end suc- 
cessfully, if not it will fail. 

Res indicabit. 

It will be shewn by the event: we shall 
thence learn whether what has been stated be 
the real truth. 

Novacula in Cot em. 

" He has met with his match ;" the person 
he attacked has proved too strong for him, 
and " he is come off second best," as the 
razor, instead of injuring the stone, was itself 

" et fragili quaerens illidere dentem, 

Offendet solido." 

Or as the viper, who, attempting to gnaw a 
file which he had found, wounded his own 
mouth, but left the file unhurt. 

c Sero 

( is ; 

Sero sapiunt Phryges. 

The Trojans became wise too late ; they 
only came to their senses, when their city was 
on the eve of being taken. Exhausted by a 
war of ten years, they then began to consult 
about restoring Helen, on whose account the 
contest had been undertaken. The adage is 
applied to persons, who do not see the advan- 
tage of any measure or precaution until it is 
too late to adopt it, and is similar to, " when 
the steed is stolen, we shut the stable door," 
and to the following of the Italians, and the 
French, " Serrar la stalla quando s' ban per- 
duti i buovi." "II est terns de fermer 1'^table 
quand les chevaux en sont alleV' 

Malo accepto stultus sapit. 

" Experience is the mistress of fools," and 
"the burnt child," M'e say, "dreads the fire." 
Some men are only to be made cautious by 
their own experience, they must suffer before 
they will be wary. 

- Piscator 

( 19 ) 

Piscator ictus sapiet. 

A fisherman, putting his hand hastily into 
his net, M'as wounded by the thorns on the 
backs of some of the fish; being thus caught, 
he said, I shall now become wiser : which is 
said to have given rise to the adage. "Bought 
wit," we say, "is best;" it will certainly be more 
likely to be remembered, than that which is 
obtained without suffering some kind of loss 
or inconvenience. Hence also we say, " wit 
once bought, is worth twice taught." "El 
hombre mancebo, perdiendo gana seso," by 
losses and disappointment young men acquire 

Manus manumfricat. 

" Una mano lava la otra." " One good 
turn deserves another." But this phrase is 
more commonly applied where two persons 
bespatter each other with fulsome and un- 
deserved compliments. " Scratch my breech, 
and I will claw your elbow." 

Ne sus Minervam. 

Persons pretending to instruct those who 

are qualified to be their masters, or to inform 

c 2 others 

( 20 ) 

others in matters of which they are themselves 
ignorant, fall under the censure of this adage; 
their conduct being as ridiculous as would be 
that of a sow who should presume to attempt 
to teach wisdom. Our clowns, not very de- 
licately, tell you, " not to teach your gran- 
dames to suck eggs," for, " a bove majori 
discit arare minor," the young ox learns to 
plow from the elder, not the elder from the 
young, and "El Diablo saba mucho," the 
Spaniards say, "porque es viejo," the devil 
knows a great deal, for he is old. 

Irwitd Minervd- 

Cutting against the grain. When any one 
attempts what he is totally unqualified for, he 
may be said to be labouring without the 
assistance of Minerva, the reputed goddess 
of wisdom, " natura repugnante, " against 
nature. " Quam quisque ndrit artem, in hac 
se exerceat," let every one confine himself to 
the art in which he has been instructed, or 
which he has particularly studied. "In 
casa del Moro no babies Algaravia." Do not 


( 21 ) 

speak Arabic in the house of a Moor, lest, 
instead of gaining credit, you only expose 
your ignorance. 

Ne Sutor ultra crepidam. 

"The shoemaker should not go beyond his 
last." Men should not attempt what they 
are neither by education nor genius qualified 
to perform, nor discourse on matters they do 
not understand; they will be listened to with 
no more attention than would be given to a 
blind man discoursing on colours. " Cada 
qual liable* en lo que sabe," let every one 
talk of what he understands. A shoemaker 
having suggested to Apelles an error in the 
form of a shoe he had painted, the artist, 
readily taking the hint, altered the picture in 
that part. But when the same shoemaker was 
proceeding to recommend alterations in the 
form and disposition of the limbs of the figure, 
he received the rebuke, \vhich thence be- 
came proverbial, "The shoemaker should not 
meddle beyond his last. " " Defienda me 
Dios de my." God defend me from myself, 
c 3 the 

( 22 ) 

the Spaniards say, make me to know what i s 
my proper state and condition. 

Par Pari referre. 

"Tal por tal," like for like, or "One 
good turn deserves another." If this has 
in all ages been esteemed a duty, in our 
commerce with persons who are indifferent 
to us, we are in a particular manner called 
upon to observe it, in our conduct to our 
parents, and to make the best return in 
our power, for their care in nourishing and 
supporting us in our infancy ; for imbuing 
our minds with good principles; for cultivat- 
ing and improving our understandings, and 
thereby enabling us to support ourselves in a 
mature age, and to fill with credit that rank, 
or situation in life, in which we .may happen 
to be placed. The vine dresser, whom King 
Henry the Fourth of France is said to have 
met with in his rambles, seems to have un- 
derstood and practised this duty, in a me- 
ritorious manner. " Having said, lie earned 
forty sous a day, the king demanded in what 
manner he disposed of the money. He 


( 23 ) 

divided his earnings, he told the monarch, 
into four parts. With the first he nourished 
himself; with the second he paid his debts; 
the third he laid out at interest, and the 
fourth he threw away. This not being in- 
telligible, the king desired an explanation. 
You observe, Sir, says the man, that I begin 
with applying the first part to my own main- 
tenance, with the second I support my parents 
who nourished me, when I was incapable of 
supporting myself, and so pay my debt of 
gratitude; with the third I maintain my 
children, who may at some future time be 
called upon to return the like service to me ; 
this part therefore is laid out at interest ; 
the fourth is paid in taxes, which, though 
intended for the service of the king, is prin- 
cipally swallowed up by the collectors, and 
therefore may be said to be thrown away." 

Something similar to the reasoning of this 
good man, is contained in the following enig- 
matical epitaph, which was inscribed on the 
tombstone of Robert of Doncaster. 

" What I gave, that I have ; 
What I spent, that I had ; 
What I left, that I lost." 

c 4 By 

( 24 ) 

By prudence in the distribution of his 
benevolence, by giving only to good and 
deserving persons, he procured to himself 
friends, on whose advice and assistance he 
might depend, whenever occasion should re- 
quire it ; and by expending only what he 
could conveniently spare, and laying it out 
on such things as administered to his comfort, 
he enjoyed, and therefore had what he ex- 
pended ; but what he left, not being enjoyed 
by himself, nor going, perhaps, to persons of 
his choice, or being used in the manner he 
would have preferred, that portion might be 
truly said to be lost. 

In Vado esse. In Portu navigare. 

The ship has escaped the threatened danger 
and is arrived safely in port. The adage is 
applied to any one who has overcome some 
difficulty, with which he had been oppressed, 
and from which there seemed little chance of 
his being able to escape. 



( 25 ) 

Toto Ccelo errare. 

" To shoot beyond the mark," to be entirely 
out in our conjecture, or opinion, on any 
business; to mistake the meaning of any 
passage in a work, or of what had been said, 
were typified by the ancients, by this and 
similar phrases, meaning, You are as far from 
the right, as the east is from the west. 

Turdus ipse sibi malum cacat. 

" The Thrush when he defiles the bough, 
Sows for himself the seeds of woe." 

Men of over communicative dispositions, 
who divulge what may by their adversaries 
be turned to their disadvantage, may be com- 
pared to the thrush, who is said to sow, with 
his excrements, the seeds of the misletoe on 
which it feeds. From the bark of the misletoe 
bird-lime is made, with which the thrush, as 
well as other birds, are not unfrequently taken. 
The eagle that had been shot, was doubly dis- 
tressed on discerning that the arrow which 
inflicted the wound, was winged with a feather 
of his own. 

( 26 ) 

Suojumento malum accersere. 

He hath brought this mischief upon himself. 
"He hath pulled an old house about his ears." 
Why would he interfere in a business in which 
he had no concern ? He should have remem- 
bered that, " He that meddleth with strife 
that doth not belong to him, is like one that 
taketh a mad dog by the ear." 

Comix Scorpium rapuit. 
The crow seizing on a scorpion, and think- 
ing he had got a delicate morsel, was stung to 
death. The adage is applicable to persons, 
who, meditating mischief to others, find the 
evil recoil upon themselves with redoubled 

Irritare Crabones. 

" You have brought a nest of hornets about 
your ears," may be applied to persons who 
have engaged in dispute with men of greater 
rank or power than themselves ; or who have 
undertaken any business beyond their ability 
to execute, and from which they cannot ex- 

( 27 ) 

tricate themselves without loss. To the same 
purport is 

Leonem stimulas. 

Why awake the lion who may tear you in 
pieces ? and the following 

Malum bene conditum ne moveris. 

When you have escaped an injury, or when 
any dispute or contest in which you were en- 
gaged is compromised, and settled, do nothing 
that may revive it, you may not come off a 
second time so well. " Non destare il can 
che dorme," the Italians say, do not wake a 
sleeping dog. And the French, 

" N'as tu pas tort, de reveiller le chat qui 
dort?" were you not wrong to wake the cat 
that was sleeping? or, " Quando la mala ven- 
tura se duerme, nadie la despierte," when 
sorrow is asleep, do not wake it." 

Bonis, vel mails Avibus. 

With good or evil omens. You began the 
business under favourable, or unfavourable 
auspices, or under a fortunate or unfortunate 
star. The Greeks and Romans frequently 


( 28 ) 

formed their opinion of the success of any 
enterprize in which they were about to engage, 
from the flight, or from the chattering, or 
singing of birds. The Augur, whose office it 
was to expound to the people the meaning of 
the omens, is supposed to have derived the 
name, or title of the office, from avis gar- 
ritus, the chattering of birds. Our country- 
man, Churchill, has ridiculed this superstition 
with much humour. 

" Among the Romans not a bird, 
Without a prophecy was heajrd ; 
Fortunes of empires ofitimes hung 
On the magician magpye's tongue, 
And every crow was to the state, 
A sure interpreter of fate. 
Prophets embodied in a college, 
(Time out of mind your seats of knowledge,) 
Infallible accounts would keep, 
When it was best to watch or sleep, 
To eat, or drink, to go, or stay, 
And when to fight, or run away, 
When matters were for action ripe, 
By l&oking at a double tripe; 
When emperors would live or die, 
They in an asses skull could spy; 
When generals would their stations keep, 
Orturn their backs in hearts of sheep." THEGHOST. 


( 29 ; 

Some vestiges of this superstition are still 
to be found in this country, and many of our 
fanners' wives would be disconcerted at hear- 
ing the croaking of a raven, at the moment 
they were setting out on a journey, whether 
of business, or of pleasure. The following 
lines from Walker's Epictetus are introduced, 
to shew that though the vulgar, in the early 
ages, might believe in these fooleries, yet there 
were not wanting then, as well as now, persons 
who were able to ridicule and despise them. 

*' The direful raven's, or the night owl's voice, 
Frightens the neighbourhood with boding noise - r 
While each believes the knowing bird portends 
Sure death, or to himself, or friends ; 
Though all that the nocturnal prophet knows, 
Is want of food, which he by whooting shews." 

Epictetus is supposed to have lived in the 
time of the Emperor Nero, more than 1700 
years ago. 

Noctua volavit. 

An owl flew by us, it is a fortunate omen, 
our project will succeed, or we shall hear 
good news from our friends. The raven, on 


( 30 ) 

the contrary, was considered as a bird of ill 
omen, and its appearance was supposed to 
predict evil. 

" That raven on yon left hand oak, 
Curse on his ill foreboding croak, 
Bodes me no good." 

The owl was in a particular manner reve- 
renced by the Athenians, as it was the favoured 
bird of Minerva, their patroness. When Pe- 
ricles was haranguing his men on board one 
of his vessels, who had mutinied, an owl, flying 
by on the right hand, is said to have settled 
on the mast of the ship, .and the men observ- 
ing the omen were immediately pacified, and 
came into his opinion. 

The phrase, noctua volavit, was also some- 
times used to intimate that any advantage 
obtained was procured by bribery, by giving 
money on which the figure of an owl was 
impressed, such coin being common among 
the Athenians. 

Quartd Luna nati. 

Born in the fourth moon. Persons who 
were peculiarly unfortunate, scarcely any 


( 31 ) 

thing succeeding to their minds, were said to 
be born in the fourth moon, that being the 
month in which Hercules was born, whose 
labours, though beneficial to the world, were 
productive of little advantage to himself. 
The Spaniards say, " En hora mala nace, 
quien mala fama cobra," he was born under 
an unlucky planet, or in an evil hour, who 
gets an ill name. The contrary to this, but 
equally the child of superstition, is 

Alba GalllncE Films. 

" Hijo de la Gallina blanca." 

Born of a white hen. This was said of 
persons who were extremely fortunate; who 
were successful in whatever they undertook; 
" who were born," as we say, " with a silver 
spoon in their mouth." The following is 
related by Suetonius, as giving origin to this 
adage. When Livia, the wife of Augustus 
Cssar, was at one of her country seats, an 
eagle flying over the place, dropped a white 
hen, holding a sprig of laurel in its beak, into 
her lap. The empress was so pleased with the 
adventure, that she ordered the hen to be 
taken care of, and the laurel to be set in the 


( 32 ) 

garden. The hen, we are told, proved un- 
usually prolific, and the laurel was equally 
thrifty ; and as there was thought to be some- 
thing supernatural in its preservation, branches 
from it continued long to be used by succeed- 
ing emperors, in their triumphs. " En hora 
buena nace, quien buena fama cobra." He 
that gets a good name, was born under a 
fortunate planet, or in a lucky hour. 

Laureum baculum gesto. 

I am always armed with a sprig of laurel, 
was said by persons who had unexpectedly 
escaped from any threatened danger. The 
laurel was thought by the ancients to be an 
antidote against poison, and to afford security 
against lightning. On account of these sup- 
posed properties, Tiberius Ceesar is said to 
have constantly worn a branch of laurel 
around his head. Laurel water was prescribed 
by the ancient physicians, in the cure of those 
fits to which children are subjected. It was, 
therefore, until within a very few years, always 
found in the shops of the apothecaries. Later 


< 33 ) 

experience has shewn, that the distilled water 
of the laurel leaf, when strongly impregnated, 
is a powerful and deadly poison. It was with 
this preparation that Captain Donellan killed 
Sir Theodosius Baughton. The opinion of 
the power of the laurel in preserving against 
lightning, rests on no better foundation than 
that of its efficacy in preventing the effects of 
poison, or in curing epilepsy. 

A horse-shoe nailed on the threshold of the 
door, was supposed by the common people in 
this country, to preserve the house from the 
effects of witchcraft, and it is still in repute 
among our sailors, who nail a horse-shoe to 
the mast, with a view of preserving the vessel 
from such evil influence. 

Fcsnum habet in Cornu, longefuge. 

Fly from that man, he has hay on his horns. 
This is said of persons of morose, quarrelsome, 
and malevolent dispositions, with whom it is 
dangerous to associate; alluding to the custom 
of fixing whisps of hay to the horns of vicious 
oxen. " Hie est niger, hunc tu, Romane, ca- 
D veto.'" 

( 34 ) 

veto." This is a dangerous fellow, beware of 

Polypi mentem obtine. 

Imitate the polypus. Change your plan 
of living according to circumstances, accom- 
modate yourself to the dispositions of the 
persons with whom you are to live, or to form 
any intimate connection. " Become all things 
to all men." Brutus, that he might escape the 
malignancy of Tarquin, who had destroyed his 
father, and his brother, assumed the character 
of idiotcy, whence he obtained his name. His 
stratagem succeeded, no mischief being to be 
apprehended, as Tarquin supposed, from so 
degraded a being. He was therefore suffered 
to live, and in time became principally instru- 
mental in freeing his country from the tyranny 
of the Tarquins, and in laying the foundation 
of a popular form of government, which con- 
tinued upwards of 700 years. The proverb 
took its rise from a supposed power of the 
polypus of assuming the colour of any sub- 
stance to which it adheres. When pursued 


( 35 ) 

it clings to the rocks, and taking the same 
colour, often escapes unnoticed. 

Multaz Regum Aures atque. Oculi. 

"An nescis longas Regibus esse Manus ?" 

" Kings," we say, " have long arms," they 
have also many eyes and ears, that is, they use 
the ministry of their many servants and de- 
pendents, hoth to discover what is done that 
may be prejudicial to their interest, and to 
punish the delinquents, whose crimes may hy 
these means have been detected, though seated 
at the extremities of their dominions. Hence 
we say, by way of caution, to persons speak- 
ing too freely, on subjects that may give 
offence, do you not know that " Les murs ont 
des oreilles?" "Walls have ears." This senti- 
ment is beautifully expressed in the Eccle- 
siastes " Curse not the king, no not in thy 
thought, and curse not the rich, in thy bed- 
chamber, for a bird of the air shall carry thy 
voice, and that which hath wings, shall tell 
the matter." 

The number of spies and emissaries em- 
ployed by Midas, king of Phrygia, who was a 
D 2 cruel 

( 36 ) 

cruel tyrant, gave occasion to the fable of 
that prince's having asses ears. Antoninus 
Caracalla, a monster in wickedness, and 
therefore full of suspicion, not only was 
frequent in his application to augurs, and 
soothsayers, in the hope that by their means 
he might discover whether any designs were 
hatching against his life, but he made it a 
serious complaint against Providence, that he 
was not endowed with the faculty of hearing 
with his own ears, whatever was said of him : 
so impotent is the influence of wealth or 
minence, in imparting happiness to the pos- 
sessor, unless, like Titus, he employs them in 
cliff using blessings among the people. " Paredes 
tienen oyclos," et "Tras pared, ni tras seto no 
digas tu secreto." Walls haVe ears, and behind 
a wall or a hedge do not tell a secret. 

Malo N~odo mains qu&re.ndus Cuneus. 
A tough and harsh knot, is not to be at- 
tempted to be cut by a fine tool ; it can only 
be overcome by the application of a strong 
wedge. Great difficulties or diseases are not 
ordinarily subdued, but by powerful remedies, 


( 37 ) 

which may not be applied, perhaps, without 
some degree of clanger. The adage also in- 
timates, that in repelling injuries, we may use 
weapons, or means, similar to those with which 
we have been attacked. Craft and cunning 
may therefore be properly had recourse to, in 
opposing the machinations of the malevolent, 
and unjust. A horse perceiving that a lion 
was endeavouring by pretending to be skilful 
in medicine to entice him into his power, in 
order to destroy him, asked him to look at a 
swelling which he affected to have in his foot, 
and the lion preparing to examine the part, 
the horse gave him so violent a stroke with 
his heels, as laid him sprawling on the ground- 
The adage also means, that a lesser evil is 
sometimes obliterated by a greater, and one 
passion or affection of the rnind by another. 

" Even as one heat another heat expels, 

Or as one nail by strength drives out another, 
So the remembrance of my former love, 
Is by another object quite forgotten." 

Oleum Camino addere. 
" Jetter de 1'huile sur le feu," to add fuel 
to the fire; irritating instead of appeasing the 
D 3 enraged 

( 38 ) 

enraged passions. Giving wine to young 
persons, whose blood is ordinarily too hot, is 
"adding fuel to the fire." 

Ululas Athenas portas. 
The owl was a favoured bird among the 
Athenians, and so abounded, that sending 
owls to Athens, was like " carrying water to 
the sea," or, "coals to Newcastle." It was, 
according to the Spanish phrase, " Vender 
miel al Colmenaro," offering honey to one 
who had bee-hives ; " Croesi pecuniar ter 
unciam addere," or adding a farthing to the 
wealth of Croesus, esteemed in his time, the 
richest monarch in the world. The adage is 
also applicable to persons telling as news what 
is generally known, or offering to instruct 
any one in arts, with which he is well ac- 
quainted. Making presents to the rich, and 
'neglecting friends or relations, to whom such 
assistance might be beneficial, are acts falling 
also under the censure of this proverb. 

Suum cuique pulchrum. 
M*e each of us think, that whatever we 


( 39 ) 

possess, whether children, horses, dogs, houses, 
or any other things, are better than those of 
our neighbours, " all our geese are swans." 
Or, as a common adage has it, " Every crow 
thinks her own bird fair." This disposition, 
when not carried to excess, is rather to be 
encouraged than reproved, as tending to make 
us contented and happy, in our situations; 
indulged too much, it occasions our becoming 
dupes to sycophants and flatterers. None fall 
so easily under the influence of this prejudice, 
as poets, orators, and artisans, who are gene- 
rally as much enamoured with their own pro- 
ductions, as lovers are with the charms of their 
mistresses. "Nemo unquam, neque poeta, 
neque orator fuit, qui quenquam meliorem se 
arbitraretur," there never was poet, or orator, 
Cicero says, who thought any other superior 
to himself in his art, nor any lover who did 
not find more beauty in his mistress than in 
any other woman. 

Patrice. Fumus Igni alieno luculentior. 
Even the smoke of our own chimney shines 
brighter than the fire of a stranger's, for 
D 4 "Home 

( 40 ) 

c; Home is home, though ever so homely." 
" Bos alienus subinde prospectat foras," the 
strange ox frequently looks to the door, ready 
to return to the home, whence he has been 
lately taken ; and we know that dogs can 
scarcely, by any kindness, be prevented from 
returning to the houses of their old masters. 
" Chaque oiseau trouve son nid bien," the 
French say; and the Italians, "Adogniuccello, 
il suo nido e bello," every bird prefers his 
own nest. 

As a comparatively small portion only of 
mankind can inhabit the temperate regions of 
the earth, or can acquire a larger portion of 
the goods of fortune, than are necessary for 
their subsistence, if this disposition to be 
contented with, and even to give a prefer- 
ence to our native soil, and our home, had 
not been implanted in us by Providence, 
the misery and distress, already so abundant 
in the world, would have been greatly in- 
creased. But we often carry this affection 
too far, and are thence led, not only to prefer 
our own possessions, as was noticed under the 
last adage, but to think too cheaply of, or 


C 41 ) 

even to despise those of our neighbours. 
This sort of prejudice is most seen in neigh- 
bouring countries, and cannot be better illus- 
trated than by adverting to the contemptuous 
expressions used by the common people of 
this country when speaking of France, which, 
though one of the most fertile countries in 
the world, they seem to think that it scarcely 
produces sufficient for the sustenance of its 
inhabitants. This amor patrise is well de- 
scribed by Goldsmith in the following lines 
in his Traveller. 

" The shuddering tenant of the frigid zone, 
Boldly proclaims the happiest spot his own. 
Extols the treasures of his stormy seas, 
And his long night of revelry and ease. 
The naked savage panting at the line, 
Boasts of his golden sands, and palmy wine, 
Basks in the glare, or stems the tepid wave, 
And thanks his Gods for all the good they gave,, 
Nor less the patriot's boast, where'er we roam, 
His first, best country ever is at home." 

The reader may not be displeased at seeing 
the following on the same subject. 

" Cling to your home, if there the meanest shed, 
Yield but a hearth and shelter to your head, 


( 42 ) 

And some poor plot, with fruitage scantly stored, 
Be all that Heaven allots you for your board ; 
Unsavoured bread, and herbs that scattered grow, 
Wild on the river's brink, or mountain's brow ; 
Yet e'en this c-heerless mansion shall provide, 
More heart's repose, than all the world beside." 

Tales and Poems bij the. Rev. R. BLAND, p. 81. 

Frons Occipitio prior. 

By this enigmatical expression, that the 
forehead in which the eyes are placed, pre- 
cedes the hind-head ; the ancients meant to 
shew, that all business may be expected to be 
best performed, if attended to by the persons 
who are to be benefited by it. A philosopher 
being asked by his neighbour, what would 
best fatten his horse ? answered " the eyes of 
its master," as his presence would make his 
fields most fertile and productive, the foot of 
the owner being the best manure for his land. 
"Quando en casa no esta el gato, estiendese 
el raton," that is, "When the cat is away, the 
mice will play." T. Livius, on the same sub- 
ject, says, "Non satis feliciter solere procedere, 
quse oculis agas alienis," that business is not 


( 43 ) 

likely to go on well, which is committed to 
the management of strangers. The Italians, 
French, and Spaniards, as well as ourselves, 
have adopted the answer given by the philo- 
sopher, among their proverbs, viz. " L'occhio 
del Padrone, ingrassa il cavallo." It. " L'ceil 
du maitre engraisse le cheval." Fr. "Elojo 
del amo engorda el caballo."Sp. that is, "The 
eye of the master makes the horse fat." A 
lusty man riding on a lean and sorry jade, 
being asked how it happened that he looked 
so well, and his horse so ill, said, it was because 
he provided for himself, but his servant had 
the care of the beast. 

The word "prior" in the adage, is used in 
the sense of potior, or melior, better. 

JEqualis lEqualem delect at, and 
Simile gaudet simili. 

"Like to like." Hence we see persons of 
similar dispositions, habits, and years, and 
pursuing the same studies, usually congre- 
gating together, as most able to assist each 
other in their pursuits. " Ogni simile appe- 


( 44 ) 

tisce il suo simile," every man endeavours 
to associate with those who are like himself. 
"Chacun aime son semblable," Fr. and which 
is nearly the same, " Cada uno busca a su 
semejante." Sp. The contrary to this is, 

Fig u I us Figitlo invidet, Faber Fabro. 

" Two of a trade can never agree," each 
of them fearing to be excelled by his rival. 
This passion might be turned to their mutual 
advantage, if they should be thence induced 
to labour to excel each other in their art. It 
would then become, " Cos ingeniorum," a 
whetstone to their wit. But it more often 
expends itself in envying and endeavouring 
to depress their rivals. 

" The potter hates another of the trade, 
If by his hands a finer dish is made; 
The smith, his brother smith with scorn doth treaf, 
If he his iron strikes with brisker heat." 

" Etiam mendicus mendico invidet." 
" It is one beggar's woe, 

To see another by the door go." 

The passion is found also among animals, 
" Canes socium in culina nullum amant," or 
11 Una dooms non alit.duos canes," the dog 


( 45 ) 

will have no companion in the kitchen, anH" 
"Monscum monte non miscebitur," two proud 
and haughty persons are seldom found toagree. 

Principium Dimidium totius, or 
Dimidium Facti, qui bene cepit, habet. 

" A work well begun is half clone," which 
has also been adopted by the Spaniards, the 
Italians, and the French. " Buen principio la 
mitad es hecho." Sp. "Chi ben commencia a 
la meta dell' opra finito." It. " II est bien 
avanc6, qui a bien commence*," he has made 
good progress in a business, who has begun it 
well. We often find great reluctance, and 
have much difficulty, in bringing ourselves 
to set about a business, but being once en- 
gaged in it, we usually then go on with plea- 
sure, feeling ourselves interested in carrying 
it on to its completion. In morals, an earnest 
desire to be good, is in a great measure the 
means of becoming good. 

Satius est Initiis mederi quam F'mi. 
"A stitch in time saves nine." The most 
serious diseases, if taken in time, might often 

be cured. 

" Principiis 

( 46' ) 

" Principiis obsta, sero medicina paratur, 
Quum mala per longas invaluere moras," 

oppose the disease in the beginning, for 
medicine will be applied too late, when it 
has taken deep root, and fixed itself in the 
constitution. To the same purport are, "Sero 
clypeum post vulnera," it is too late to have 
recourse to your shield, after you are wounded. 
" La casa quemada, acudis con el agua," the 
Spaniards say, " When the house is burnt, 
you then bring water.'' Evil dispositions in 
children, are also to be corrected before they 
become habits. "Qui bien aime, bien chatie," 
or "Spare the rod, and spoil the child.'' 

Fortes Fortuna adjwcat. 

l< Fortune assists the brave," " sed multo 
majus ratio," Cicero adds, but reason or con- 
sideration, is still more to be depended on ; 
therefore, " antequam incipias consulto, et 
ubi consulueris, facto opus est," that is r 
think before you act, but having well con- 
sidered, and formed your plan, go on re- 
solutely to the end. To design well, and to 
persevere with vigour in the road we have 


{ 47 ) 

chalked out for ourselves, is the almost cer- 
tain way to attain our object. " At in rebus 
arcluis," but in great and sudden difficulties, 
a bold and courageous effort will frequently 
succeed, where reason or deliberation could 
give no assistance, for "non est apucl aram 
consultandum," when the enemy is within the 
walls, it is too late for consultation. 

" When dangers urge he that is slow, 
Takes from himself, and adds to his foe.'' 

And, " Quien no se aventura, no ha ventura," 
" nothing venture nothing have." The pro- 
verb has been pretty generally adopted. "A 
los osados ayuda la fortuna," the Spaniards 
say ; and the French " La Fortune aide aux 
audacieux." Which being the same as the 
Latin, need not to be explained. 

Cum Lawis luctari. 

Contending with, or reproaching the dead, 
which was held to be a great opprobrium, or 
scandal among the ancients. It was " vellere 
barbam leoni mortuo," taking a dead lion by 
the beard. "De mortuis nil nisi bonum," 


( 48 ) 

that is, of the dead, record only what will 
tend to their honour, has therefore passed into 
a proverb, agreeably to which is the Italian 
adage, " Non dir die il vero de vivi, 6 non 
parlar che bene de morti," speak only what 
is true of the living, and what is honourable 
of the dead. But the dead can receive no 
harm, and the world may be benefited by 
publishing their errors. In Egypt persons 
were appointed, we are told, whose office it 
was, to examine into the conduct of their 
deceased sovereigns; if it had been such as 
had been beneficial to the kingdom, the 
warmest tribute of praise was paid to their 
memories; if bad, their conduct was censured 
and their memory reprobated, to serve as a 
warning to their successors. 

Taurum toilet qui vitulum sustulerit, or 

tollere Taurum, 

Qua tulerit Vitulum, ilia potest. 

" Who has been used to carry a calf, may 
in time carry an ox." The adage is said to 
have taken its rise from the story of a woman 


( 49 ) 

who took delight in nursing and carrying 
about with her a calf, and as the animal grew, 
her strength so increased, that she was able to 
carry it when it became an ox. Or, as Eras- 
mus conjectures, from the story of Milo the 
Crotonian, who was said, with great ease to 
take up an ox, and carry it on his shoulders ; 
but who perished miserably, " Wedged in the 
oak which he strove to rend." It may be 
used to shew the force of habit or custom, and 
its influence both on our mental and bodily 
powers, which may by use be increased to 
an almost incredible degree. Also to shew 
the necessity of checking and eradicating the 
first germs of vice in children, as, if they be 
suffered to fix themselves, they will in time 
become too powerful to be subdued. 

" Nimia Familiar it as par it Contemptum.^ 

" Familiaritc- engendre mcpris." 

" Familiarity breeds contempt." " E tribus 

optimis rebus," Plutarch says, " tres pessimas 

oriuntur," from three excellent endowments, 

three of the worst of our affections are pro- 

E dnced. 

duced. Truth begets hatred, familiarity con- 
tempt, and success envy. The contrary to this 
may be, 

Omne ignotum pro magn'ifico est. 
We are apt rather to extol those persons 
whom we know only by report, but with 
whose merit, or real characters, we are not 
acquainted. " A prophet is not without ho- 
nour," we are told, "save in his own country." 
Great men should not associate too familiarly 
with the world, ever more ready to blazon their 
defects, which reduce them to their own stan- 
dard, than to admire those talents and qualities 
which they are incapable of imitating. To 
posterity they must look for justice, which 
never fails paying to their genius and abilities, 
the homage that had been refused them by 
their own age and country. " Suum cuique 
decus posteritas rependet." Posterity will 
give to every one the portion of commenda- 
tion, to which he was entitled by his merit. 
Or the adage may be thus interpreted : 'What 
is mentioned in the gross often fills the mind 
with surprise, which in detail would excite no 
emotion. If we should say of any man that 


he ordinarily walked between two and three 
thousand miles in a year, the account would 
seem to be exaggerated ; but if we should say, 
he walked six or seven miles in a day, which 
would amount to the same number of miles in 
the year, no surprize would be excited. 

Mandrabuli more Res succedit, 

Was used to be said of any business not 
going on according to expectation ; or from 
persons indulging hopes of advantage from ill- 
concerted or ill- matured projects, not likely 
to be successful; but rather " ad morem Man- 
drabuli," to become every day worse. It may 
be applied to those " who expect that age will 
perform the promises of youth; and that the 
deficiencies of the present day will be supplied 
by the morrow:" but who will most likely be 

Who Mandrabulus was is not known, but 
it is recorded of him, that having found a 
considerable treasure, in the fulness of his 
heart he presented at the altar of Juno a 
golden ram, meaning to make a similar offer- 
E 2 ing 

ing every year ; but repenting, as it would 
seem, of his liberality, the next year he offered 
only a ram of silver ; and the following year, 
one of brass ; and hence, that is, from the 
gift offered at the shrine of the goddess, having 
been thus every year lessened in its value, 
proceeds the proverb. 

Maturbfias senex, si diu velis esse senex. 

" Old young and old long." " Quien 
quisiere ser mucho tiempo viejo, comiencelo 
presto." The Spaniards say, you must begin 
to be old, that is, you must leave off the irre- 
gularities of youth betimes, if you wish to 
enjoy a long and healthy old age : for " quas 
peccamus juvenes, ea luimus senes," young 
men's knocks, old men feel," and " Senem 
juventus pigra, mendicum creat," youth pass- 
ed in idleness produces usually an old age of 
want and beggary. The French almost in the 
same words say, " Jeunesse oiseuse, vieillesse 
disetteuse." The pleasures of the senses too 
much indulged, or too long persisted in, lay 
the foundation of diseases, which either cut 


( 53 ) 

off life prematurely, or make the evening of 
our days miserable. 

" Si quieres vivir sano, haz te viejo temprano." 

Senis mutarc Linguam. 

It is difficult for persons advanced in years 
to acquire a new language. The rigid and 
unyielding muscles of aged persons, render 
them as unfit for pronouncing a language to 
which they have not been accustomed, as the 
limbs of a cripple are for dancing. But the 
sentiment may be extended further, as they 
would be scarcely less successful in attempting 
the acquisition of any new art or science ; 
such acquisition requiring a greater degree of 
vigour, than they can be supposed to have re- 
tained. The province of the ancient, if their 
time has been well employed, is rather to in- 
struct others, than to hunt after new sources 
of knowledge. Plutarch says, " that the life 
of a vestal virgin was divided into three por- 
tions ; in the first of which she learned the 
duties of her profession, in the second she 
practised them, and in the third she taught 
E 3 them 

them to others." This is no bad model for per- 
sons in every situation of life. The proverb 
may be applied to persons attempting anything 
for which they are peculiarly disqualified. 

Homo longus raro sapiens, and 
A metis longus. 

Tall men are rarely found to be wise. 
The Spaniards say, " El grande de cuerpo, no 
es muy hombre.'' That is, the robust man i s 
rarely a great man ; and the Scotch, " fat 
paunches bode lean pates/' Livy seems also 
to patronise the opinion, " men of great sta- 
ture and bulk," he says, " appear more for- 
midable, than they are found to be on trial." 
His observation, however, may be supposed to 
relate rather to their courage or bodily strength, 
than to their genius or understanding. " Sir 
Francis Bacon being asked by King James, 
what he thought of the French ambassador ; 
he answered, that he was a tall proper man. 
I, his Majesty replied, but what think you 
of his head -piece ? is he proper for the office 
of ambassador ? Sir, said Bacon, tall men are 


like houses of four or five stories, wherein 
commonly the uppermost room is worst fur- 
nished." And Burton says, that " commonly 
your vast bodies and fine features are sottish, 
dull, and heavy spirits." Yet, notwithstanding 
this coincidence of opinion, of these different 
countries and persons, and the suffrages of 
others might perhaps be joined ; the observa- 
tion will be found to be much oftener contra- 
dicted than confirmed; and almost every one's 
experience will tell him, that wit and judg- 
ment are promiscuously distributed, and fall 
as often to the lot of the tall and the robust 
as to those of an opposite stature and bulk. 

Mustelam habes. 

You have a weasel in your house, was said 
to persons with whom every thing turned out 
unfortunate and perverse. To meet a weasel 
was considered by the ancients as ominous, 
and portending some misfortune about to hap- 
pen. Among huntsmen in this country, Eras- 
mus tells us, it was in his time deemed an ill 
omen, if any one named a weasel when they 
E 4 were 

( 56 ) 

were setting off for their sport. Theophrastus, 
in his description of the character of a super- 
stitious man, says; " If a weasel crosses the 
road he stops short, be his business never so 
pressing, and will not stir a foot till somebody 
else has gone before him and broke the omen; 
or till he himself has weakened the prodigy by 
throwing three stones." 

E multis Palcis, pauliim Fructus collegi. 

" Much straw, but little grain." With 
much labour I have obtained but small profit; 
or, from a long and laboured discourse, but 
little information. " Assai romor et poco 
lana." " Great cry but little wool, as the 
devil said when he sheared his hogs." This 
adage takes it rise from a scene in one of the 
Misteries, a kind of dramatic amusement very 
popular before the use of plays; in which the 
devil is introduced shearing one of those ani- 
mals, which continued making a most fright- 
ful noise during the operation, to the^ great 
diversion of the audience, 



( 57 ) 

Extra Lutum Peeks hales. 

You have been fortunate in getting out of 
that difficulty, or that you did not engage in 
a business, which, however promising it might 
appear, could not but have involved you in 
much trouble. Literally it means, in drawing 
your feet out of the mud. 

Ex Umbra in Solem. 

You have explained that difficult passage, 
and rendered clear and luminous, what was 
before obscure and difficult. 

Ex uno omnia specta. 

From one act, or circumstance, you will 
readily judge what is the real character or 
disposition of the man. This may to a cer- 
tain degree be admitted as a test; as, if a man 
be detected in any deliberate act of villany, 
where there has been an evident design to 
defraud or injure another, we may without 
hesitation pronounce the party to be a bad 
man : but the converse of this, may not be 


( 58 ) 

so surely depended on, and we may not with 
safety, from one single act of charity, or 
kindness, pronounce the party to be a good 
man, or trust him as such. So also, if a man 
from walking over Bagshot Heath, should 
take upon him to determine the state of this 
country, as to its fertility, and should de- 
scribe it as in general barren and inhospitable, 
or from being deceived by an individual, with 
whom he had been engaged in business, should 
determine that the inhabitants are faithless, 
and not to be trusted, it is evident, that in 
both cases, he would be found to have passed 

a rash and precipitate judgment. 


Ad Consilium ne accesseris, antequam voceris. 

" Speak when you are spoken to, and come 
when you are called for. 5 ' Advice should not, 
generally speaking, be offered until it is re- 
quired, for, "proffered service stinks." But if 
we see one, in whose welfare we feel ourselves 
interested, about to engage in a connection, 
or business, by which he is likely to be in- 
jured, it becomes then the part of a friend to 


( 59 ) 

interfere, and admonish him of his danger, 
though his opinion should not have been 
asked, or even though caution has been used, 
to keep the circumstance from his knowledge. 
Still the task is far from being grateful. 
" Le mauvais metier," Guy Patin says, " que 
celui de censeur; on ne gagne a 1'exercer que 
la haine de ceux qu'on reprend, et on ne cor- 
rige personne," it is a bad business that of 
a censor, he is sure to incur the hatred of 
those he reproves, without having the pleasure 
of finding them improved by his advice. "Ne 
prendre conseil que de sa tete," that is, "Take 
counsel only of your own thoughts," the 
French say, but this is in some degree con- 
tradicted by the following : " Un fou avise 
bien un sage," even a fool may suggest what 
may deserve the attention of a wise man; we 
should therefore listen to advice, let it come 
from what quarter it will, for "Al buen consejo 
no se halla precio," good advice is inestimable. 

Et meum Tclum Cuspidem habet acuminatum. 

Even my dart has also a point, and is ca- 

( 60 ) 

pable of inflicting a wound, though it may 
not pierce so deep as yours. I would willingly 
avoid contest, but if you will continue to 
molest me, I will not suffer alone, but will 
take caVe you shall feel a part of the evil. 
Agreeably to this sentiment also, is the Scot- 
tish Order of the Thistle, framed, with its 
motto " Nemo me impune lacessit." 

Barbte ten us Sapient cs. 

Philosophers even to the beard. Oh, he is 
a wise man, you may see it by his beard, may 
be applied ironically to persons of grave and 
serious manners, who wish to pass themselves 
off for men of more learning, or knowledge, 
than they really possess. As the beard is not 
completely formed until the age of manhood, 
it has always been considered as an emblem 
of wisdom. " II est terns d'etre sage, quand 
on a la barbe au menton," it is time to be 
wise now that you have a beard on your chin; 
and, "Hombre de barba," with the Spaniards, 
means a man of knowledge, or intelligence. 
" Diga barba que haga," let your beard advise 


you what is befitting you to do, and "a poca 
barba, poca virguenza," little beard, little 
shame, or modesty. " Quixadas sin barbas no 
inerecen ser honradas," chins without beards 
deserve no honour. " Fa ire la barbe," among 
the French, means to deceive, or impose on 
any one, by superior address or cunning; also, 
to excel in wisdom and sagacity. Among 
the Persians, and perhaps generally in the 
east, the beard is held in great reverence, and 
to speak of it slightingly or disrespectfully, 
would be resented, and for a stranger to vio- 
late it, by touching it, would probably be 
avenged by instant death. 

JYb;z est ejusdem et multa, et opportuna dicere. 

It is not easy for any one to talk a great 
deal, and altogether to the purpose. " A 
mucho hablar, mucho errar," talk much, and 
err much. " No diga la langua par do pague 
la cabeza," " the tongue talks at the head's 
cost," and " eating little, and speaking little, 
can never do harm." "He that speaks doth 
sow, but he that is silent reaps." " En boca 


cerrada, no entra moscha," flies do not enter 
the mouth that is shut, and " Fous sont sages, 
quand ils se taisent," fools are wise, or may 
be so reputed, when they are silent. 

Aut Regem aut Fatuum nasci oportuit. 

A man should either be born a king or an 
idiot, he should be at the top r or at the 
bottom of the wheel of fortune ; at the least, 
there are men so ambitious, of such high and 
daring spirits, that they will venture every 
thing, their fortunes, and their lives, to attain 
to the highest rank in their country. They 
will be, "aut Caesar, aut nullus," either kings 
or beggars. " O rico, o pinjada," rich, or 
hanged, "neck, or nothing." Milton makes 
Lucifer say, 

" To reign is worth ambition, though in hell. 
Better to reign in hell, than serve in heaven." 

But the adage seems to have a special refer- 
ence to the respect usually paid to idiots. 
In Turkey, and in other parts of the east, 
they were held in such veneration, that it was 
thought to be no less than a sin to oppose, or 


( 63 ) 

control them in any thing they were disposed 
to do. They had therefore equal liberty with 
kings, who say and do whatever they please. 
To a late period, it was usual with the nobles, 
in this, as well as in other countries of Europe, 
to entertain in their houses a fool, for their 
diversion, who often took the liberty of re- 
proving their masters for their follies, and in 
much freer language than any other persons 
were permitted to use. When Jaques, in "As 
you like it," proposed putting on a fool's coat, 
he says, 

" I must have liberty 

Withal, as large a charter as the wind, 

To blow on whom I please ; for so fools have." 

May it be added, what is currently said, 
"Fools are fortunate." They also may be 
said to be happy, as they neither anticipate 
evil, nor even feeLthe full pressure of it when 
present. " Dieu aide a trois sortes de per- 
sonnes, aux fous, aux enfans, et auxivrognes," 
God protects three sorts of persons, fools, 
infants, and drunkards, the latter rarely fall- 
ing, it is said, into any danger, even when 
full of drink. The French also say, " Tte 


( 64 ) 

cle fou ne blanchit jamais," the head of the 
fool never becomes grey, which is probably 
not better founded than the former obser- 

Minutula Pluvia Imbrem parit. 

Many small drops make a shower. " Goutte 
a goutte la mer s'egoute," the sea itself 
may be emptied by drops. " Petit a. petit 
1'oiseau fait son nid," by little and little the 
bird makes his nest, and "many a little 
makes a mickle." By the accumulation of 
small sums, large fortunes may frequently be 
made. " Poco 6 spesso empie il borsetto," 
little and often fills the purse. Therefore the 
proverb says, "Take care of your pence, 
your shillings and your pounds will take 
care of themselves. '\ The adage also admo- 
nishes, not to disregard slight evils, they may 
increase to a considerable magnitude; or small 
expenses, for if there be many of them, though 
each of them singly may be insignificant, to- 
gether they will make a formidable sum. Of 
the same tendency is, 


( 65 ) 

Gutta cavat Lapidem. 

By the constant trickling of water, the solid 
stone becomes excavated. This should en- 
courage us to perseverance in industry, to 
which few things are impossible. " Mad ruga y 
veras, trabaja y auras," rise betimes and you 
will see, labour assiduously and you will have. 

" Oft little add to little, and the amount 

Will swell, heaped atoms thus produce a mount." 

Hum ausculta, cui quatuor sunt Aures. 

Listen to him who has four ears. It is not 
known what gave birth to this adage, but it 
is understood, as advising to attend to old 
and experienced persons, who are slow in 
judging, who are more ready to hear than to 
speak; or, as the English proverb has it, "who 
have wide ears and short tongues." 

" He that hears much, and speaks not at all, 

Shall be welcome in parlour, in kitchen and hall/' 

" Oi, voye, et te taise, 

Si tu veux vivre en pais." 

That is, if you wish to live quietly, hear, see, 

F and 

( 66 ) 

and be silent ; which is taken probably from 
the following monkish line. 

" Audi, vide, tace, si vis vivere in pace." 
A similar sense has, "prospectandum vetulo 
latrante cane," when the old dog barks, or 
opens, then attend. 

Adfelicem inflectere Parietem. 

When a vessel, in sailing, inclines too much 
to one side, the passengers usually crowd to 
the other, where seems to be the greatest 
safety, and when fortune ceases to smile on 
any one, or he is found to be sinking, it is 
then that his friends usually leave him, and 
fly to others who are more successful. Though 
such conduct cannot but* be condemned by 
all ingenuous persons, yet on the other hand, 
we should not so connect ourselves with the 
fortunes of those who are falling, as to make 
our own ruin inevitable with theirs. 1' Juvare 
arnicos rebus afflictis decet." We should in- 
deed assist our friends in their misfortunes, 
but not at the hazard of the destruction of 
ourselves arid families, otherwise we should 


subject ourselves to the censure implied in. 
the following, " Alienos agros irrigas, tuis 
sitientibus," while watering the fields of our 
neighbour, we leave our own to be parched 
with drought. " Harto es necio y loco, quien 
vacia su cuerpo, por inchir el de otro," he is 
foolish and mad enough, who empties his own 
purse to fill that of another. 

Manumnonverterim, Digitum 

Are Latin phrases used to express the most 
perfect supineness and indifference on any 
subject, and which we have adopted : " I 
would not give a turn of my hand, or hold 
out a finger to obtain it," or, "I value not a 
straw what such a person may say of me," or, 
" there is not the turn of a straw difference 
between them." 

Emere malo, quam rogare. 

I had rather buy what I want, than ask 
any one for it. To an ingenuous mind, it is a 
hard thing to be obliged to say, I beg; he had 

F 2 rathe r 

( 68 ) 

rather purchase what he stands in need of, 
with his own money, or if he has not money, 
with the labour of his own hands. " Neque 
enim levi mercede emit, qui precatur," he 
pays no small price for a favour, who buys it 
by intreaties. " If I had money," Socrates 
said, "I would this morning have bought 
myself a coat." Though the money was im- 
mediately supplied by his friend, yet it came, 
Seneca observes, too late. It was a shame 
that such a man should have been reduced to 
the necessity of asking for it. 

Ubi amid, ibi opes. 

Where there are friends, there is wealth, or, 
in the usual acceptation of the proverb, It 
is better to have friends without money, than 
money without friends. "Aquelles son ricos, 
que tienen amigos," they are rich who have 
friends. To be possessed of friends, is doubt- 
less valuable, as they may stand us in stead 
in our troubles ; but in the ordinary occur- 
rences of life, money may be depended on 
with more certainty, as it will purchase us 


( 69 ) 

both conveniences and friends. " Las nece- 
dades del rico, por sentencias passan en el 
mundo," even the foolish sayings of the rich, 
pass in the world as oracles. We may there- 
fore more truly say, " Ubi opes, ibi amici," 
he that has wealth has friends ; " Vulgus 
amicitias utilitate probat," for friends are 
commonly esteemed only in proportion to the 
advantages they are able to procure us. 

"Hood an ass with reverend purple, 
So you can hide his two ambitious ears, 
And he shall pass for a cathedral doctor." Volpone. 

Thus aulicum. 

Court incense. The splendid promises of 
courtiers, like the odoriferous vapour of. 
frankincense, please the Qenses for a time, 
but they are both of them light and volatile, 
and leave no beneficial effects behind them. 

Contra Stimulum calces. 

1 You are kicking against the pricks," may 

be said to persons, who, impatient under any 

affliction or injury, by attempting to avenge 

F 3 themselves, 

( 70 ) 

themselves, increase their misfortune ; or who 
contend with persons capable of inflicting a 
much severer punishment, than that which 
they are suffering. "Paul, Paul, why per- 
secutest thou me? It is hard for thee to kick 
against the pricks." The adage takes its rise 
from the custom of goading oxen, to make 
them go forward, with sticks, having sharp 
points. If they are restive and push back- 
wards, they force the points of the sticks into 
their flesh. 

Nullus sum. 

I am undone, lost beyond all possibility of 
redemption, was the exclamation of Davus, 
when he found that he had, by his schemes, 
precipitated his master into the very engage- 
ment he was employed, and actually meant to 
extricate him from. 

Nee Obolum habet, unde Restim emat. . 

He has not a penny left to buy an halter. 
He has no property, " ne in pelle quidem," 


( .71 ) 

not even in his skin. " Ne obolus quiclem 
relictus est," he has totally dissipated and 
wasted his property, not a morsel, or the 
smallest particle of it remains. " He is as poor 
as a church mouse." 

" Beg," Gratiano says to Shylock, " that 
thou may est have leave to hang thyself; 

" And yet, thy wealth being forfeit to the state, 
Thou hast not left the value of a cord ; 
Therefore thou must be hanged at the state's charge." 

" No le alcaca la sal al agua," " he is so poor," 
the Spaniards say, " that he hath not salt 
enough to season his water." Xenophon, in 
his dialogues, makes one of the interlocutors 
say, " he had not so much land as would 
furnish dust for the body of a wrestler." 

De Land caprinA. 

Disputing about what is of no value, about 
goat's wool, which can be turned to no profit, 
and half the disputes in the world are of as 
little importance; at the least, the subjects of 
them are rarely of half the value of the trouble 
and expense incurred in the contest. Of the 
F 4 same 

( 72 ) 

same kind are, " De fumo disceptare," vel 
" deasini umbra." Plutarch tells a ludicrous 
story, as giving origin to the latter adage. 
Demosthenes observing, that the judges before 
whom he was pleading, paid no attention to 
what he was saying, but were discoursing on 
matters that had no relation to the subject 
before them, said to them, "If you will lend 
your attention a little, I have now a story to 
relate that will amuse you." Finding they 
were turned to him, he said, "A certain 
young man hired an ass, to carry provision to 
a neighbouring town, but the day proving to 
be very hot, and there being no place on the 
road affording shelter, he stopped the ass, and 
sat himself down on one side of him, so as to 
be shaded by the ass from the sun. On this, 
the driver insisted on his getting up, aHeging 
that he had hired the ass to carry his load, 
not to afford him a shade. The man, on the 
other hand, contended, that having hired the 
ass for the journey, he had a right to use him 
as a screen from the sun, as well as to carry 
his goods ; besides, he added, the goods on 
the back of the ass, which were his, afforded 


( 73 ) 

more than half the shade; and so long a dis- 
pute ensued, which came at length to blows." 
Demosthenes, perceiving the judges were now 
fully intent on listening to his story, sud- 
denly broke off, and descending from the 
rostrum, proceeded to walk out of the court. 
The judges calling to him to finish his story, 
" I perceive you are ready enough," he said, 
" to listen to a ridiculous story about the 
shadow of an ass, but when I was pleading 
the cause of a man, accused of a crime affect- 
ing his life, you had not leisure to pay it the 
necessary attention, to enable you to be mas- 
ters of the subject on which you were to 
decide." A story in many respects similar to 
this, is related of Dr. Elmar, who was Bishop 
of London in the time of Queen Elizabeth. 
In the course of a sermon he was preaching 
in his parish church, before he had attained 
to the dignity of a bishopric, finding his 
auditory careless and inattentive, he read, 
with great solemnity, a passage from a Hebrew 
book he happened to have with him. This 
drawing the attention of the congregation, he 
reproved them for their inconsistency in lis- 

( 74 ) 

tening to him when reading a language they 
did not understand, and neglecting or refus- 
ing to hear him, when explaining to them in 
their own language, doctrines, which they 
were materially interested to know and un- 

Talpd ccKcior. 

Blinder than a mole. The ancients thought 
moles had no eyes, but they have two small 
eyes, affording them so much sight, as to en- 
able them to know when they have emerged 
through the earth, and they no sooner per- 
ceive the light, than they return into their 
burrows, where alone they can be safe. This 
proverb is applied to persons who are exceed- 
ingly slow in conceiving, or understanding 
what is said to them ; also to persons search- 
ing for what lays immediately before them. 
" If it was a bear," we say, " it would bite 
you." To the same purport is 

Leberide c&cior. 

By the leberis, the Latins meant the dry 
and cast skin of a serpent, or of any other 


( 75 ) 

animal, accustomed to change its coat, in 
which the apertures for the eyes only remain. 
With us, it is usual, in censuring the same 
defect, to say, " He is as blind as a beetle." 
" We are all of us used to be Argus's abroad, 
but moles at home," but how much better 
would it be to correct an error in ourselves, 
than to find an hundred in our neighbours. 

PecunicE, obediunt omnla. 

" Money masters all things." All things 
obey, or are subservient to money, it is there- 
fore the principal object of our attention. 
" Sine me vocari pessimum, ut dives vocer," 
call the what you will, so you do but admit 
me to be rich. " Nemo an bonus : an dives 
omnes qua3rimus." When about to treat 
with or enter into business with any one, 
we do not so much inquire whether he is a 
good, as whether he is a rich man ; " Nee 
quare et unde ? quid habeat, tantum rogant," 
nor by what means he acquired his money, 
but only how much he actually possesses. 
" Gifts," we say, " break through stone walls," 


( 76 ) 

for what virtue is proof against a bribe ? " He 
that has money in his purse, cannot want a 
head for his shoulders." That is, he will never 
want persons to advise, assist, and defend him. 
" I d-iiiari fan correre i cavallo," " it is mo- 
ney that makes the mare to go." " For dinero 
buy hi el perro," the dog dances for money ; 
and l< Quien dinaro tiene, hazo lo que quiere," 
he that has money may have what he pleases. 
" Plate sin with gold, and the strong arm 
of justice cannot reach it; clothe it in rags, a 
pigmy straw will pierce it." Volpone, in the 
comedy of that name, addressing his gold, 

" Such are thy beauties, and our loves, dear saint, 
Riches ! thou dumb god, that giv'st all men tongues ; 
That canst do naught, and yet mak'st men do all things ; 
The price of souls ; even hell, with thee to boot, 
Is made worth heaven. Thou art virtue, fame, 
Honour, and all things else. Who can get thee, 
He shall be noble, valiant, honest, wise." 

On the other hand, we are told, that Fortune 
makes those whom she most favours fools; 
" Fortuna nimium quern favet, stultum facit," 
and " Ubi mens plurima, ibi minima fortuna/' 


( 77 ) 

those who abound in knowledge are usually 
most deficient in money. It has a ^ s been ob- 
served, that riches excite envy, and often ex- 
pose the possessors of it to danger : the storm 
passes over the shrub, but tears up the oak by 
its roots. " God help the rich/' we say, " the 
poor can beg." 

" Cantabit vacuus coram latrone viator," 

the thief who makes the rich man to tremble, 
excites no alarm in the breast of the beggar ; 
he has nothing to lose. 

" Hence, robbers hence, to yonder wealthier door, 
Unenvied poverty protects the poor. 

" Non esse cupidum, pecunia est, non esse 
emacem, vectigal est," not to be covetous, to 
desire riches, is wealth ; not to be extravagant 
or expensive, is an estate. Hence poverty 
has been called, the harbour of peace and se^ 
curity, where undisturbed sleep and undissem- 
bled joys do dwell. " Fidelius rident tugu- 
ria," the laughter of the cottage is more 
hearty and sincere than that of the court: 
great \vealth therefore conduces but little to 
happiness : and " as he who has health is 


( 78 ) 

young; so be who owes nothing is rich." 
"Dantur quidem bonis, ne quis mala estimet; 
malis autem, ne quis nimis bona," riches are 
given to the good, St. Austin says, that they 
mav not be esteemed an evil ; to the bad, that 


they may not be too highly valued. 

Omnium horarum homo. 

A companion for all hours or seasons. 
This may be said of persons of versatile and 
easy dispositions, who can accommodate them- 
selves to all circumstances, whether of festivity 
or of trouble ; who with the grave can be seri- 
ous, with the gay cheerful ; and who are 
equally fit to conduct matters of business or 
of pleasure: such a man, we are told, was the 
philosopher Aristippus. 

" Omnis Aristippum decuit color.'' 

Every thing became him, by which enviable 
qualities, he was always a favoured guest at all 
tables and in all companies. 


(" 79 ) 

Veritatis simplex est oratio. 

Truth needs not the ornament of many 
words, it is most lovely then when least 
adorned. There are circumstances, however, 
in which art may honestly be used ; when we 
have any afflicting news to communicate, it is 
often necessary to prepare the mind for its re- 
ception by some general observations : or 
when we would persuade a person to do what 
we know to be unpleasant, but which we be- 
lieve would be ultimately to his advantage; 
or would recal him from courses or connec- 
tions, we believe to be injurious to his fame or 
fortune. In these cases a blunt declaration of 
our intentions would defeat the proposed end, 
and we must have recourse to a little art and 
management to engage the attention of the 
persons whom we wish to persuade. The pro- 
verb is opposed to those who. by a multiplicity 
of words, endeavour to obscure the truth, and 
to induce those they converse with to enter- 
tain opinions very different to what they 
would have formed, if the story had been told 
in a plain and simple manner. Two architects 


( 80 ) 

having offered themselves as candidates to 
erect a public building at Athens, the one de- 
scribed in a florid and ostentatious manner, 
all the parts of the building, and with what 
ornaments he would complete it ; when he had 
finished, the other only said, " My lords, 
what this man has said, I will do." He was 

Injuries sprcta cxolescunt, si irascaris 
^ agnita videntur. 

Injuries that are slighted and suffered to 
pass unnoticed, are soon forgotten; by resent- 
ing them, unless you are able to punish the 
agressor, you acknowledge yourself to be 
hurt, and so afford a triumph to the person 
who gave the affront. " Deridet, sed non 
derideor," he laugheth, but I am not laugh- 
ed at. " The wise man passeth by an injury, 
but anger resteth in the bosom of a fool. 

Omnes sibi melius esse malunt quam alteri* 

We all of us wish better to ourselves than 
to others. Though a friend is said to be ano- 

( 81 ) 

ther self, yet what affects our own safety, is 
doubtless to be attended to before the con- 
cerns of any other person, for " proximus 
egomet mihi," I am my own nearest relation ; 
and " Charity begins at home." " Tunica pal- 
lio propior est." " Near is my shirt," we say, 
" but nearer is my skin." To the same purport, 
and nearly in the same words are, " Ma che- 
mise m'est plus proche que ma robe." Fr. 
" Tocca piu la camisa ch' il gippone." It. 
" Mas cerca esta la camisa, que el sayo," thajt 
is, my shirt is nearer than my coat. 

Extra Telorum Jactum. 

Beyond bow-shot, or the reach of darts. 
" Out of harm's way." " Out of debt, out of 
clanger." Be concerned in no disputes, and 
neither say nor do any thing of which an ad- 
vantage may be taken, is the direction of pru- 
dence; but from the mixed nature of human 
affairs, not to be completely followed, but by 
those who live only for themselves. Let 
those, however, who neglect this caution be 
sure that they have resolution enough to bear, 

* or 

( 82 ) 

or strength sufficient to overcome the difficul- 
ties they may have brought upon themselves by 
their imprudence. Socrates being asked, who 
was the wisest man, answered " he who offends 
the least." 

Non cuivis homini contingit adire Cormthum. 

It is not the fortune of every man to be 
able to go to Corinth. This city, from its 
commerce, and from the great concourse of 
strangers accustomed to visit it, became the 


most wealthy, and in time, the most volup- 
tuous city in the world ; it was also cele- 
brated for its numerous and splendid temples, 
baths, theatres, and other exquisitely rich and 
beautiful public buildings, and unfortunately 
not less so for its debaucheries. It was, there- 
fore, only suitable to the circumstances of the 
rich to visit a place so dissipated and expen- 
sive. Corinth gave its name to the fourth 
order of architecture, which was invented and 
first employed in the public buildings there, 
and to a metallic composition, Corinthian 
brass, which was very beautiful and durable, 


( 83 ) 

but of which there are no vestiges remaining. 
The proverb may be aptly used to deter per- 
sons from entering on pursuits, or engaging in 
projects much beyond their faculties or powers 
to carry into execution. 

Fenestram, vel Januam aperire, 
May be said when any one has incautiously 
given information which may be turned to 
the disadvantage of themselves or their friends. 
Do you see what consequences may follow, 
what mischief may ensue ? you have opened a 
door to a thousand evils. 

Ovem Lupo commisisti. 

" Entregar las ovejas al lobo," you have 
trusted the sheep to the care of the wolf, the 
geese to the keeping of the fox. This may 
be said of a parent who has left his children 
in the hands of rapacious guardians, who will 
fleece them of their property, not husband and 
preserve it : a misfortune which happened to 
Erasmus, When in conversation we have dis- 
G 2 closed 

( 84 ) 

closed any thing to those who should not have 
known it, and who will be enabled to injure 
persons whom they wish to oppress ; it may 
be said, you have now put him in the power of 
his enemy ; " you have given the wolf the 
weather to keep." 

Nulla Dies sine L'mea. 

No day without a line, was the advice and 
the practice of Apelles. No one must expect 
to be perfect in any art, without incessant 
care and diligence; therefore, 

" Nulla dies abeat, quin linea ducta supersit," 

no day should be suffered to pass, without leav- 
ing some memorial of itself. " Diem perdidi," 
" I have lost a day," was the exclamation of 
the Emperor Titus, finding, on a review of 
what had been performed, that he had relieved 
no distressed person, nor done any act deserv- 
ing recollection in the course of the day. 

Manibus, Pedibusque. 

With the utmost exertion of our hands and 


( 85 ) 

feet, or " with tooth and nail," as we say. 
" Nervis omnibus," " straining every nerve," 
exerting our utmost power or ability to effect 
the purpose; " Remis velisque," pushing it on 
with oars and sails ; " Omnem movere lapi- 
dem," " leaving no stone unturned," to dis- 
cover what we are in search of, are forms of 
speech used by the Romans, which have been 
adopted by us, and are therefore here ad- 
mitted ; as may be also " Toto pectore," with 
our whole soul, loving or hating any one. 
These are all, and indeed many more similar 
expressions, treated of by Erasmus as distinct 
proverbs ; but it was thought to be better to 
bring them together here, in this manner. 

It may not be amiss, once for all, to observe, 
that I have not confined myself to the sense 
given by Erasmus to many of the adages. 
As I have frequently passed over very long 
disquisitions, when they appeared to me not 
suitable to the present state of literature, or of 
the times ; so on the other hand, I have some- 
times expatiated largely, where he has given 
the exposition in two or three lines. Another 
considerable difference is, that here are intro- 
G 3 duced 

( 86 ) 

duced many corresponding adages, in the 
French, Italian," Spanish, and English lan- 
guages, none of which are to be found in his 
book. It is singular, Jortin remarks, that 
though Erasmus spent a large part of his time 
in France, Italy, and England, it does not ap- 
pear that he was ever able to converse in any 
of those languages; or perhaps to read the pro- 
ductions of any of the writers in those coun- 
tries, excepting such as were written in Latin ; 
which, as a language in general use, appears 
to have been adopted by most of the literati 
down to his time ; excepting perhaps by the 
Italians, whose language had attained a higher 
degree of polish and perfection than any of 
the others. 

Sub ornni Lapide Scorpius clormit. 

We should believe that under every stone 
a scorpion may be lodged, which seems to be 
the sense of the adage ; and it is intended to 
admonish us in all business to act with deli- 
beration and caution, that we may not involve 


( 87 ) 

ourselves in troubles and dangers; particularly 
we should set a guard over our tongues and 
not be too communicative, lest we should 
instruct others in any plans we may have 
formed for the advancement of our affairs, 
who may thence be enabled to become our 
rivals, and prevent the completion of our de- 
signs : or by speaking too freely of the con- 
cerns of others excite enmities which mav be 


productive of consequences still more mis- 
chievous. " Volto sciolto," the Italians say, " i 
pensiert stretti," be free and open in your coun- 
tenance and address, but cautious and reserved 
in your communications. There are many other 
similar cautions ; " Latet anguis in herba," 
there is a snake in the grass, take care how 
you tread. " Debaxo de la miel, ay hiel," 
under the honey you may find gall. " Paredes 
tien oydos :" and " tras pared, ni tras seto, no 
digas tu secreto." tc Walls have ears," be cau- 
tious what you say; and " little pitchers have 
long ears." Children, even when playing about 
you, are often more attentive to what you are 
saying, than to their own amusement. " Dizen 
los ninos en el solejar, lo que oyen a sus pa- 
G 4 dres 


( 38 ) 

dres en el bogar," they tell when abroad, \vhat 
they hear their parents saying by the fireside. 
In the countries where scorpions breed, they 
are frequently found lying under stones, as 
worms are in this country ; any one therefore 
incautiously removing a stone, under which 
one of these venemous reptiles may happen to 
lie, will be in danger of being stung by the 
enraged animal, whence the proverb. 

Asinum sub frceno currere doces. 
Teaching an ass to obey the rein, which the 
ancients thought to be nearly as difficult as 
u to wash a black-a-moor white," or to do any 
other impossible thing, " Labour in vain." 
Though I think it is not now found to be 
so difficult, and those animals are made to 
serve for many useful purposes. The adage 
is used by Horace, and with much elegance, 
in his first Satire. 

" At si cognates nullo natura labore 

Quos tibi dat, retinere veils, servareque amicos; 
Infelix operam perclas ; ut si quis asellum 
In campo doceat parentem currere frcenis." 

Put if you expect to obtain the affection of 


( 89 ) 

your relations, or to preserve the esteem of 
your friends, without making any return for 
their kindness, you will find yourself, wretch 
that you are, miserably deceived, as he would 
be, who should attempt to teach an ass to be 
obedient to the rein. 

Annosam Arborem transplantare. 

Persons quitting a business or profession in 
which they have been long engaged, and had 
been successful, and attempting some new 
employment, are as little likely to succeed, as a 
tree is to flourish, when removed from the soil 
in which it had been long fixed. 

Aranearum Telas texere. 

Weaving of cobwebs, which persons are 
said to do, who waste their time and money 
in frivolous pursuits ; in procuring what will 
be of no use when obtained : in collecting 

* O 

butterflies, cockle-shells, &c. " et stultus 
labor est ineptiarum," and such like fooleries. 
Laws also, which by the great are easily 


( 90 ) 

evaded, and which seem only made to entrap 
the poor, are, by common consent, called cob- 
web contrivances. They were so called by 
Anarcharsis "They catch," he said, "small 
flies, but wasps and hornets break them with 

" Hence little villains oft submit to fate, 

That great ones may enjoy the world in state." 

Sat pulchra, si sat bona. 

" Fair enough, if good enough, " for 
"handsome is, who handsome does," and 
"sat cito si sat bene," "soon enough, if 
well enough," are proverbs of all ages, and all 
countries, and need no explanation. " Her- 
mosa es por cierto, la que es buena de su 
cuerpo," the woman who is modest is suffi- 
ciently handsome. 

Harence mandas Semina. In Aqua vel in Saxis 
semen tern fads. 

Sowing your grain among stones, where 
they cannot take root, in the water, or on 


( 91 ) 

sand. " In aqua scribis, in harena sedificas," 
writing on water, or building on sand, with 
many others, are phrases used by the Romans, 
and are applicable to persons bestowing much 
labour in effecting what is impossible to be 
done, or heaping favours upon an ungrateful 
person, from whom no return can be expected. 
" Can the ^Ethiopian change his skin, or the 
leopard his spots ?" 

Later em lavas. 

It is like washing bricks, which the more 
you scour them, the more muddy they become: 
meaning bricks made of clay, and not burnt, 
but dried in the sun ; such as were used in 
the East, and probably are so now, or " Laver 
la te"te d'un ane," by which the French de- 
signate such unavailing attempts. The pro- 
verb may also be applied to persons, endea- 
vouring by fictitious ornaments to make any 
thing appear more beautiful and valuable than 
it is, or by rhetorical flourishes to give a false 
colour to any action. 


( 92 ) 

Surdo can is. 

You are preaching to the deaf; to prepos- 
sessed and prejudiced ears; to persons so be- 
sotted and addicted to their vices, that they 
will not listen to you, though your advice he 
most suitable to them, and such as they can- 
not reject, but to their manifest disadvantage. 
" They are like to the deaf adder, which 
stoppeth her ears, and refuseth to hear the 
voice of the charmer, charm he never so 
wisely." As the following narrative seems to 
give an ingenious explanation of this passage 
in the Psalms, it is here added. "There is a 
kind of snake in India," Mr. Forbes says, in 
his Oriental Memoirs, lately published, " which 
is called the dancing snake. They are carried 
in baskets throughout Hindostan, and procure 
a maintenance for a set of people, who play a 
few simple notes on the flute, with which the 
snakes seem much delighted, and keep time 
by a graceful motion of the head, erecting 
about half their length from the ground, and 
following the music with gentle curves, like 
the undulating lines of a swan's neck. It is a 
well attested fact, that when a house is in- 

( 93 ) 

fested with these snakes, and some others of 
the coluber genus, which destroy poultry, and 
small domestic animals, as also by the larger 
serpents of the boa tribe, the musicians are 
sent for, who, by playing on a flageolet, find 
out their hiding places, and charm them to 
destruction ; for no sooner do the snakes hear 
the music, than they come from their retreat, 
and are easily taken. I imagine," Mr. Forbes 
says, " that these musical snakes were known 
in Palestine, from the Psalmist comparing the 
ungodly to ' the deaf adder, which stoppeth 
her ears, and refuseth to hear the voice of the 
charmer, charm he never so wisely.' When 
the music ceaseth, the snakes appear motion- 
less, but if not immediately covered up in the 
basket, the spectators are liable to fatal acci- 
dents. Among my drawings is that of a cobra 
de capello, which danced for an hour on the 
table, while I painted it, during which I fre- 
quently handled it, to observe the beauty of 
the spots, and especially the spectacles on the 
hood, not doubting but that its venemous 
fangs had been previously extracted. But the 
next morning I was informed by my servant,, 


that while purchasing some fruit, lie observed 
the man who had been with me the preceding 
evening, entertaining the country people, who 
were sitting on the ground around him, with 
his dancing snakes, when the animal that I 

O ' 

had so often handled, darted suddenly at the 
throat of a young woman, and inflicted a 
wound, of which she died in about half an 

Delph'mum nature doces, vel Aquilam volare. 

Affecting to give information to persons on 
subjects they are better acquainted with than 
ourselves, is like teaching birds to fly, or fishes 
to swim. 

Malta cadant inter Calicem, supremaque Labra. 

" Entre la bouche, et le verre, 
Le vin souvent tombe a terre." 

" Many things happen between the cup and 
the lip," was the saying of a servant to his 
master, whom he saw anxiously tending a 
vine, from which he promised himself an abun- 
dant produce of excellent liquor, of which, 


( 95 ) 

however, he was not permitted to partake ; 
for, at the moment he was about to taste the 
wine, the reward, as he thought, of his labour, 
he was told that a boar had broke into his 
vineyard, and was destroying his trees ; run- 
ning hastily to drive away the beast, it turned 
upon him, and killed him. We are hence 
taught, not to be too sanguine in our hopes 
of success, even in our best concerted projects, 
it too often happening that they fail in pro- 
ducing the intended advantages. " De la mano 
a la boca, se pierde la sopa," is the same sen- 
timent in Spanish. The adage may also be 
-explained, as admonishing us " to take time 
by the forelock," that is. not to let a present 
opportunity, or advantage, to pass by, a similar 
one may not again occur. " Strike, therefore, 
while the iron is hot," and 

" He that will not when he may, 
When he will he shall have nay." 

Incidis in Scyllam, cupiens vitare Charybdim. 

Attempting to escape the rocks of Scylla, 
we are ingulphed in the whirlpool of Cha- 
ry bdis. 

( 96 ) 

rybclis. The two opposite coasts of the strait 
dividing Sicily and Italy, were anciently called 
by these names, and as they were steep and 
rocky, they appeared so formidable, and per- 
haps occasioned so many ships to be wrecked, 
that Homer makes Ulysses describe them as 
two terrible monsters, that stood ready to 
destroy any vessels that came within their 
reach. All possible endeavours were therefore 
used by mariners, to keep their ships in the 
middle of the strait. The proverb is applied 
to persons who, attempting to avoid one evil, 
fall into another more grievous and insupport- 
able ; who, attempting to rescue a part of their 
property which they see in danger, lose both 
their property and their lives. " It is falling,'" 
\ve say, " out of the fryingpan into the fire," 
in which form the proverb has been adopted 
by the French, the Italians, and the Spanish. 
" Sauter de la poile, et se jetter dans les 
braises." " Cader d'alla padella nelle bragie." 
" Saltar de la sarten, y caer en las brasas," 
but of two evils we should choose the least. 
" Meglio 6 dar la lana, che la pecora," better 
lose the wool than the sheep. 


The adage is used by Philip Gualtier, a 
Flemish writer of the thirteenth century, in a 
poem celebrating the conquests of Alexander 
the Great. The lines are an apostrophe, ad- 
dressed to Darius, who, flying from Alexander^ 
fell into the hands of Bessus, one of his gene- 

"Quo tendis inertem, 

Rex periture, fugam ? nescis, lieu, perdite ! nescia 
Quern fugias; hostes incurris, d'um fugis hostera. 
Incidis in Scyllam, cupiens vitare Charybdim." 

Menagiana, vol. 3. p. 130. 

Whither, O unfortunate prince, do you bend 
your unavailing flight ? you know not, alas, 
from whom you are flying; attempting to 
avoid one enemy, you fall into the hands of 
another, more savage and destructive. Endea- 
vouring to escape Chary bclis, you are wrecked 
en the rocks of Scylla. 

Flamma Fumo est proximo,. 

If there were no fire, there could be no 
smoke. " Common fame is seldom to blame." 
All that we have heard may not be true, but 
so much could not have been said, if there 

H were 

( 98 ) 

were no foundation. We should avoid the 
first approach to vice, or danger; though small 
at first, it may increase to an alarming magni- 
tude. The smoke may soon be succeeded by 
flame. He who would keep his morals un- 
tainted, must not associate familiarly with the 
debauched and wicked. 

" Vice is a monster of such frightful mien, 
As to be hated needs but to be seen ; 
But seen too oft, familiar with her face, 
We first admire, next pity, then embrace." 

The fox, when he first saw a lion, ran from 
him in great terror, but meeting one a second, 
and then a third time, he had courage enough 
to approach, and salute him. The Spaniards 
and the French use the proverb somewhat 
differently. " Cerca le anda el humo, tras 
la llama," and " II n'y a point de feu sans 
fume"e/' where there is fire, there will be some 
smoke; that is, where any foul action has been 
committed, it will by some outlet or other 
escape, and become known, "Murder will 
out," we say. 

( 99 ) 

Paupertas Sapientiam sortita est, 

" La P overt a e la Madre chile Invenxione" 

" Necessity is the Mother of Invention." 

" Magister artis ingeniique largitor venter," 
venter, or the stomach, is the master of all 
art, and bestower of genius and invention. 
" Hunger," we therefore say, " will break 
through stone walls." "The stomach," Rabelais 
says, " only speaks by signs, but those signs 
are more readily obeyed by every one, than 
the statutes of senates, or the commands of 
monarchs." To answer is useless, for " El 
vientre ayuno, no oye ninguno," " the stomach 
has no ears." 

Persons who have no property but what is 
procured by their industry, on which they 
may subsist, will endeavour more diligently 
to improve their understandings, than those 
who, being amply endowed, find every thing 
provided to their hands, without labour. 
" Crosses are ladders that do lead to heaven." 
Consonant to which the French say, " V r ent 
au visage rend un homme sage," wind in a 
man's face, that is, adversity, or trouble, makes 
ii 2 .him 

him wise; and, "a pobrcza no ay verguenca," 
poverty has no shame, that is-, want makes 
men bold, and to descend to means, for their 
subsistence, which, in better circumstances, 
they would be ashamed to have recourse to* 
This, more than all o^ther considerations, 
should induce every one "Messe tenus propria 
vivere," to live within their means, "to let 
their purse be their master." 

Bis Pueri Senes. 

Ancient persons are twice children, or as 
we say, " Once a man, and twice a child." 
Age ordinarily induces a degree of imbecility, 
both in the mind and body, resembling child- 
hood. Persons in a very advanced age become 
feeble and impotent, their legs tremble, oblig- 
ing them to support themselves with a stick ; 
their hands shake, so that they are unable to 
cut their food, and at length of even carrying 
it to their mouths. They become toothless, 
and are obliged, like children, to be fed with 
spoon-meats; their eyes become weak, incapa- 
citating them from reading, and their organs 


( 101 ) 

of hearing dull and obtuse, so that they can 
no longer take a part in conversation. These 
two sources of information heing cut off, the 
mind, no longer solicited by the surrounding 
objects, or excited by the acquisition of new 
materials, becomes languid and inert ; the 
traces of the knowledge it had acquired, be- 
come faint, and are at length nearly oblite- 
rated, and thus is induced a complete second 
childhood, "and mere oblivion, sans teeth, 
sans eyes, sans taste, sans every thing." 

" Ubi jam validis quassatum est viribus aevi 
Corpus, et obtusis cecitlerunt viribus artus, 
Claudicat ingenium, delirat linguaque mensque." 

LUCRET. Lib.\\l. lin. 452. 
" When age prevails, 

And the quick vigour of each member fails, 
The mind's brisk powers decrease, and waste apace, 
And grave and reverend folly takes the place." 

Trans, by CKEECII. 

Crambe bis posita, Mors. 
By frequent repetition, even the most plea- 
sant and agreeable story tires, and at length 
nauseates, as do also the most favourite viands. 
The particular plant called Crambe by the 
H 3 ancients 

( 102 ) 

ancients is not now known. It was thought 
to have the power of preventing the inebriat- 
ing effects of wine, and hence we are told, a 
portion of it, previously baked, was usually 
taken by the /Egyptians, and some other 
nations, before sitting down to their tables, 
that they might indulge more freely in drink- 
ing; but twice baked, or too often taken, it ex^ 
cited nausea and disgust, whence the proverb. 

"Occidit miseros crambe repetita magistros." JUVENAL, 

To hear the same lesson, so oft repeated, is 
the death of us poor masters. 

Manum de tabula. 

Desist, leave off correcting and amending, 
"Nimia cura detent magis quam emendat," 
too much care may injure instead of improving 
your work. " You should therefore let well 
alone." Apelles, seeing Protogenes with too 
much care and anxiety, labouring to give a 
complete finishing to a picture, which he had 
already made extremely beautiful, fearful lest 
by such frequent touching, and retouching, 


C 103 ) 

he should diminish, instead of heightening its 
value, cried out " manum cle tabula." The 
adage is of extensive application, being refer- 
able to every kind of work, among others, to 
this of explaining proverbs, which too much 
labour, instead of elucidating, may render 

Veterem Injuriamferendo, invitas novam. 

By quietly bearing, and putting up with 
one affront, we often lay ourselves open to 
fresh insults. Though humanity and tender- 
ness towards our neighbours and associates, 
and a disposition to overlook slight offences, 
is highly commendable, and is becoming the 
frailty of our nature; yet too great facility in 
this point, is not only improper, but may in, 
the end be highly injurious, even to the parties 
whose offence we have overlooked. JEsop has 
given us in one of his fables a story, which 
may serve to illustrate this adage. " A boy 
out of idleness and wantonness, throwing 
stones at, and otherwise insulting him, he 
had recourse, at first," he says, " to intreaties 

n4 to 

( 104 } 

to induce him to desist: these failing, he gave 
him a small piece of money, all, he told the 
boy, he could spare ; at the same time he 
shewed him a more wealthy person, who was 
coining that way, and advised him to throw 
stones at him, from whom he might expect a 
much larger reward. The boy followed his 
advice, but the rich man, instead of in treating, 
or bribing him to desist, ordered his servants 
to take him before a magistrate, by whom he 
was severely punished. " Socrates, indeed, 
seemed to be of a different opinion, when he 
said, " If an ass kicks me, shall I strike him 
again?" but this forbearance must not be car- 
ried too far, for, according to the Italian pro- 
verb, " Che pecora si fa, il lupo la mangia," 
and the French, " Qui se fait brebis, le loup 
le mange," that is, he that makes himself a 
sheep, shall be eaten by the wolf. If a strange 
dog, going along the street, claps his tail 
between his 1 legs, and runs away, every cur 
will snap at him ; but, if he turns upon them, 
and gives a counter snarl, they will let him go 
on without further molestation. 


( 105 ) 

Ansam qucerere. 

Seeking a handle or opportunity for break- 
ing an agreement into which any one may 
have improvidently entered, or an occasion 
for quarrelling ; and to persons of a litigious 
disposition, very trifling causes M 7 511 afford han- 
dle sufficient for the purpose. The phrase is 
used by us in as many ways, as it was formerly 
among the Romans. You know the temper 
of the man, be careful that you give him no 
handle, no ground for cavilling, though that 
may be difficult, as a man so disposed, will 
make a handle of any thing. " When we 
have determined to beat a dog, the first hedge 
we come to will furnish us with a stick for 
the purpose." 

Oleum et operam perdere. 

Losing both oil and labour, which those 
were said to do, who had employed much 
time, labour, study, and expense, in endea- 
vouring to attain an object, without being 
able to effect their purpose. Those who con- 
tended at the public games among the an- 

( 106 ) 

cients, were used to anoint their limbs with 
oil, previous to their entering on the contest ; 
if they were conquered therefore they lost 
both oil and labour ; as those did who failed 
in the acquisition of knowledge, their re- 
searches being principally carried on by the 
light of a lamp; whence the adage, which the 
following story may serve further to illustrate: 
" A man having a suit at law, sent to the 
judge as a present a vessel of oil; his antago- 
nist, that he might be even with him, sent a 
well fatted pig, which turned the scale in his 
favour and gained him the cause : the first 
man complaining and reminding the judge of 
the present he had sent him ; true, said the 
judge, but a great hog burst into the room 
and overturned the vessel, and so both the oil 
and labour were lost." 

Mortuum Jlagellas. 

It is flogging a dead man, or one who re- 
gards your censures as little as do the dead, 
may be said to any one reproving a person 


( 107 ) 

who is incorrigibly wicked, and who has lost 
all sense of shame or decency : or by persons 
charged with the commission of crimes of 
which they know themselves to be innocent. 

Nocumentum, Docitmentum. 

" Trouble teaches." Adopted probably for 
its jingle, like " harm watch, harm catch ;" and 
many more in our language, and like them 
containing an useful precept. The sense is, 
that it is the part of wisdom or prudence to 
profit by our mischances: those who have been 
plundered by servants or defrauded by bad 
customers, become more cautious in securing 
their property, and in inquiring more diligent- 
ly into the character of the persons to whom 
they give credit, that they are not wasteful 
and extravagant spendthrifts, inattentive to 
business, or persons of depraved morals. A 
merchant who had suffered much in this way 
determined at length that he would give no 
credit, he therefore put out a sign representing 
a fire in which were a number of account 


( 108 ) 

books burning; when any one wanted credit, 
he told them it was impossible he could give 
it, his books being burnt. Trouble ajso and 
distress leads us to reflect upon our past con- 
duct, and to reform what is amiss. " Periissem 
nisi periissem," if I had not suffered, I had 
been undone. " If thou be in woe, sorrow, 
want, pain, or distress, remember that God 
chastiseth them whom he loveth, and that 
they that so\v in tears shall reap in joy. As 
the furnace proveth the potter's vessel, so doth 
trouble and vexation try men's thoughts." 
" Ecce spectaculum Deo dignum, vir fortis 
mala fortuna compositus," behold a spectacle 
worthy of God, a good man contending with 

Nuces relinquere, 

Abandon or throw away your nuts : that is, 
leave off childish amusements, and addict your- 
self to employments that are more manly and 
better suited to your age and present situa- 
tion in life. The adage is said to be derived 


( 109 ) 

from the bridegroom scattering nuts when 
leading his spouse to the temple; intimating 
that he now purposed to give up boyish 
sports, among which playing with nuts, was 
not unfrequent. Those who did not do so, 
were said " redire ad nuces," or " nuces repe- 
tere," to return to their playthings, to be- 
come children again. 

sum, non CEdipus. 

I am Davus, not CEdipus; that is, I am a 
man of plain understanding and no conjuror, 
or wizard, may be said to persons speaking 
enigmatically or more finely than the subject 
requires : or whom we do not wish to under- 
stand, or would oblige to be more explicit than 
they are inclined or intend to be. CEdipus was 
famed, we are told, for expounding the riddle 
of the Sphinx, which no one before him had 
been able to explain. 

Ex Harend Funiculum nectis. 

It is like making a rope of sand ; labouring 


( HO ) 

to do what can by no art be effected ; this may 
be said to persons bringing together in the way 
of argument, things not having the least co- 
herence or connection. It is like attempting 
" jungere vulpes," to yoke foxes; or u mulgere 
hircum," to milk a he-goat. 

Latum Unguem. 

There's not the breadth of a nail, or of a 
straw, or of a hair, of difference between them, 
and yet even for that trifle, they keep up the 
contention and with no small degree of acri- 

" But in the way of bargain, mark ye me, 
I'll cavil on the ninth part of a hair!" Henry IV. 

Non tarn Ovum Ovo simile. 

He is as like his brother as one egg is to 
another. The Latins have numerous adages 
of this kind, consisting of a simple compari- 
son : it \vas thought right to transplant a few 
of them here, particularly such as have cor- 
respondent phrases in our language. 


( in ) 

Magis mutus quam Pisces. 

" Muet comme un poisson," as mute as a 
fish. The opposite to this is 

Turtura loquacior. 

More loquacious than the turtle-dove. We 
say, perhaps more pertinently, to great chat- 
terers, " you prate like a parrot or a magpye," 
which are still more famed for garrulity, than 
the turtle-dove, " Quse tamen, non ore tan- 
turn, sed etiam postica corporis parte clamare 

OU(E Amicitia. 

Friends to the table. Persons attached to 
the fortune, not to the beauty or dispositions 
of their mistresses or friends, were so called. 

" Te putat ille SUJE captum nidore culinse, 
Nee mate conjectat." JUVENAL. 

He thinks you are more attracted by the smell 
of his kitchen, than by affection to his person 
or regard to his interest, and is not mistaken. 
" Fervet olla, vivit amicitia," for such friend- 

ship only lasts while the pot continues ttf 

" Amigo del buen tiempo, mudase con ei viento," 
those who are only friends to your good for-* 
tune, change with the wind. Young men of 
fortune have abundance of such friends, who 
are very ready in assisting to disburthen them 
of their wealth ; when that is effected, they 
become more shy in their attendance, and at 
length leave them to reflect at their leisure on 


the folly of their conduct. 

" If Fortune wrap thee warm, 

Then friends about thee swarm, 

Like bees about a honey-pot : 

But, if dame Fortune frown, 

And cast thee fairly down, 
By Jove thou may'st lie there and rot." 

Nat Lee is said to have diverted himself with 
singing this song when in Bethlehem. The 
sentiment is not ill expressed by our homely 
proverb, " no longer pipe, no longer dance." 

Multa novit Fitlpes, sed Felis unum magnum. 

A fox bragging of the number of tricks 


( US ) 

and shifts he occasionally used to escape tile 
hounds, a cat that was present, observed that 
she had hut one, which was to climb up the 
nearest tree or building, and that being com- 
pletely effectual was of more value than all 
the stratagems of the fo^ which did not al- 
ways preserve him from the huntsmen. The 
proverb teaches that it is better to rely on 
the advice of one sensible friend, than to have 
recourse to many whose contrary and discor- 
dant opinions would be more likely to perplex 
and confound, than to teach us how to escape 
from our difficulties. When also we would 
convince or persuade, it is better ordinarily 
to depend on one powerful argument, than to 
use a variety of petty ones ; as " too many 
cooks," are said, to " spoil the broth." Against 
this tenet, however, we have several apo- 
thegms equally accredited, as " vis unita for- 
tior," the united power of many agents is 
stronger than that of one ; which is probably 
as true applied to the understanding as to 
bodily strength ; so " quae non prosunt sin- 
gula, juncta juvant," though each argument 
may be individually weak, yet a number of 

i them 

them made to bear upon the same point 
may be successful. Solomon tells us also, 
that " in the multitude of counsel there 13 

Ars varia Vulpi, ast una Echino maxima. 

The hedge-hog, for so Erasmus understands 
it, though the echinus is properly a marine 
animal, escapes its enemies by rolling itself 
up in the form of a ball, covered with sharp 
spines or thorns which they dare not take 
hold of. The adage admits the same expla- 
nation as the last. 

Auribus Lupum teneo. 

I have taken a wolf by the ears, whom I 
can with difficulty hold, and dare not let go 
lest he tear me in pieces. It may be said 
when any one has so entangled himself in 
a business, that he can neither go on with 
it satisfactorily, nor give it up without suffer, 
ing considerable damage : or by one engaged 


to a mistress, whom lie is afraid to marry on 
account of her ill-humour, and from the vio- 
lence of his affection he is incapable of leaving. 
Macbeth, after the murder of Banquo, and 
before he had given himself to the unlawful 
commerce with supernatural agents, says, 

" I am in blood 

Stept in so far, that should I wade no more, 
Returning were as tedious as go o'er/' 

To the same mode of reasoning we owe half 
the robberies and murders that are committed 
every year. Martial's description of a captious 
but extremely agreeable character may serve 
as a further illustration of this adage : 

" Difficilis, facilis, jucundus, acerbus es idem, 
Nee tecum possum vivere, nee sine te," 

which has thus been translated, 

" In all thy humours whether grave or mellow, 
Thou 'rt such a touchy, testy, pleasant fellow, 
Hast so much wit, and mirth, and spleen about thee. 
That there's no living with thee nor without thee." 

Those who go to law may be said to hold a 

wolf by the ears, or they are like sheep taking 

shelter under a hedge of thorns, whence they 

will not escape without losing the half of their 

i 2 fleeces. 

fleeces. Formerly a large estate was conveyed 
away by a piece of parchment that would not 
hold twenty short lines, which is now hardly 
done with twenty skins. This multiplying of 
words is pretended to be done for greater 
security, but has the contrary effect, " certa 
sunt paucis," certainty, or freedom from 
doubt is found where there are fewest words. 

Ne Hercules quidem adversus duos. 

Even Hercules could not contend success- 
fully against two, equally strong as himself. 
" Two to one are odds at football," may be 
said by any one who has been censured for 
not doing what, circumstanced as he was, it 
was impossible he should perform. The adage 
may with equal propriety be applied to the 
exertions of the mind ; where much has been 
done well, small errors should not be censured 
with asperity. A great philosopher should 
not be expected to be also a poet, or a man 
skilled in one art, to be equally expert in 
another. The same sentiment is contained in 


Unus Fir, nullus Vir. 

From one man unaided by advice, or other 
assistance, no great exertion, or the perform- 
ance of no very difficult, or intricate business 
should be expected. " Two heads are better 
than one, or why do folks marry ?" 

Nihil ad Versum. 

This is not to the purpose, said when a per- 
son, attempting to explain any thing, wanders 
from the subject, which he leaves more per- 
plexed than when he began. The adage is 
supposed to have taken its rise from the per- 
formers on the stage attempting to represent, 
by gesticulation, the sense of the part recited, 
in the manner, perhaps, of our pantomime. 
Failing in the attempt, this adage, " Nihil ad 
versum," was applied ; intimating that the 
action did not correspond with the sense, or 
meaning of the verse. Or it may refer to the 
oracles, which were not unfrequently delivered 
in verse, when the event was not consonant 
to the prediction. 

i 3 Nihil 

Nihil ad Fides, 

Was used to be applied to persons, whose 
manners and conversation, or whose precepts 
and mode of living were not consistent, and 
who, not very gracefully, tell us, " We should 
<Jo as they say, not as they do." 

Asinus in Unguent o> 

May be said of a clown living in the midst 
of delicacies he knows not how to use or 
enjoy ; or affecting the company of men of 
letters, whose conversation he is incapable of 
understanding. Such things suiting him as ill 
as perfumes do an ass. " No es la miel para 
la boca del asno," honey is not fit for the 
mouth of an ass. " Chantez a. 1'ane, il vous 
fera des pets." 

Asinus inter Simias. 

The ass has fallen into the company of 
apes, was said when a man of mild and easy 
manners, and of weak understanding, was 
een associating with petulant and illnatured 


( "9 ) 

persons, who insulted, and turned him to 
ridicule. Such wanton petulance is well re- 
proved by the following : 

" Set not thy foot to make the blind to fall, 
Nor wilfully offend thy weaker brother ; 
Nor wound the dead with the tongue's bitter gall, 
Neither rejoice thou in the fall of other." 

Of the same kind is " Noctua inter cornices," 
the owl is among ravens, there being the same 
dissimilarity between them, as between the 
ass and the ape. 


Alii sementemfaciunt, alii metent. 

One man labours and another reaps the pro- 
fit, or one man commits the crime but another 
suffers the punishment. " II bat le buisson 
sans prendre 1'oisillon." " One man beats the 
bush, and another catches the bird." This 
proverb was used, we are told, by Henry the 
Fifth, at the siege of Orleans. When the 
citizens would have delivered the town to the 
Duke of Burgundy, who was in the English 

C3 v * O 

camp, the king said, " Shall I beat the bush, 

and another take the bird ?" no such matter. 

i 4 These 

( 120 ) 

These words did so offend the Duke of Bur- 
gundy, that he made a peace with the French, 
and withdrew his force from the English. 
" Uno levanta la caza, y otro la mata," one 
man starts the game, and another kills it. 

Aliam quercum excute. 

Go shake some other tree, you have reaped 
sufficient profit, or taken fruit enough from 
this. The adage may be used by persons who 
have been liberal in assisting any one who still 
continues to solicit them: Go to some other 
friend, I have done my part. It may also be 
used in the way of admonishing any one to 
cease exerting himself in any course or busi- 
ness from which lie has already gained all 
the advantage it is likely to produce, or to 
change or dismiss an instructor from whom 


he has learned all that he is capable of teach- 

In the early ages of the world, when acorns 
formed a material part of our sustenance, 
there were persons who made it their business 
to collect them. When one of these was seen 


looking up to a tree, those who observed him 
would say, " Aliam quercum excute," go to 
some other tree, this has been stripped before, 
which being often repeated, came at length to 
be used as a proverb. 

Pliny tells us that even in his time, many 
nations made the acorn a part of their diet, 
not having been instructea in the method of 
cultivating wheat, or other grain, and Erasmus 
says that acorns were considered by the Span- 
iards as a dainty, and were served up as a part 
of the dessert, in which manner we find them 
introduced by the goatherds in Don Quixote. 


" Hazer lo bianco negro, y lo negro bianco." 
To make white black, and black white. 

To deceive with false pretences, or to mis- 
represent any matter, and make it appear 
different to what it is, was called painting or 
discolouring the subject; and as a species of 
fucus was anciently used as a dye, persons so 
disguising what they treated of, were said 
" fucum facere," to give a false colour to it. 
The phrase was also applied to women paint- 

( 122 ) 

ing their faces, and making themselves more 
fair than nature intended them, whence we 
learn that this practice was as usual and 
fashionable among the Greeks and Romans, 
as it is now among our own fair country- 
women. " Visage farde " among the French 
means a painted, dissembled, or false c 

Album Calculum adders. 

To approve, to put in a white stone. In 
popular assemblies among the ancients, the 
persons who had a right to vote, had a white 
and a black stone given them. If they agreed 
to the proposition, or absolved the person 
accused of any crime, they put the white 
stone into the urn ; if they disapproved of the 
proposal, or thought the person accused guil- 
ty, the black one. Hence it is now usual to 
say, when a person who has been proposed as 
a member of any of our societies, is rejected, 
that " he was black balled," though, as it 
often happens, neither black nor white balls 
were used in the ballot. 

" Mos 

( 123 ) 

if Mos erat antiquis niveis atrisque capillis, 
JJis daranare reos, illis absolvere culpa." OVID, 

Creta vet Carbone notare. 

To make a white or a black line, with 
chalk, or with charcoal, against the name of 
any one, was in like manner used to denote 
approbation, or disapproval of his conduct. 
Persius, addressing his friend Plotius Macrinus 
on his birthday, says, 

" Hunc, Macrine, diem numera meliore capillo, 
Qui tibi labentes apponit candido annos." 

ft Let this auspicious morning be expressed, 
With a white stone, distinguished from the rest; 
White as thy fame, and as thy honor clear ; 
And let new joys attend on thy new added year." 

Stylum verfcre. 

To change or correct the style or language. 
The ancients used tables covered with a coat 
of wax, on which they wrote with a style, a 
piece of iron, sharp, or pointed at the end, with 
which they made the letters, and blunt or flat 


( 124 ) 

at the other end, which they used for ob- 
literating, or rubbing out what they had 
written, either when they purposed making 
any alteration, or to employ the table for 
other writings. By a good or bad style, they 
meant therefore at first, simply to denote the 
quality of the instrument with which they 
wrote. The term was afterwards applied me- 
taphorically to the language, in which sense 
it is now used. 

The reader may not be displeased, as not 
alien to the subject, at seeing the following 
short account of the different substances that 
were employed for writing on, before the art 
of making paper from linen rags was discover- 
ed. Among the earliest we find tables of 
wood made smooth, and covered with wax, as 
has been noted above. But as what was 
written on wax might easily be defaced, leaves 
of the papyrus, a species of flag, which grew 
in great abundance in the marshes of Egypt, 
were dryed, and by a particular process pre- 
pared for the purpose. On these the letters 
were engraved with an instrument similar to 
that made use of to write on wax. Leaves so 


( 125 ) 

prepared were called charta, from a city of 
Tyre of that name, near which they were also 
found. Though the practice of using the 
papyrus has been discontinued for many ages, 
yet the terms folia leaves, and charta paper, 
derived from it, are still retained. As in 
writing a treatise, a great number of these 
leaves were required, they were connected, 
and kept together by making a hole, and 
passing a string through each of them. With 
the same string, passed several times around 
them, they were confined to prevent their 
separating, and being injured or lost, when no 
one was reading, or using them, and thence, 
Pancirollus thinks, a bundle of them obtained 
the name of volumen, or a volume. Another 
article used for the purpose, was the inner 
bark of certain trees. This was prepared by 
beating it, and then incorporating it with a 
solution of gum arable. As the inner bark of 
trees is called liber, the volumes, or books, 
were thence called libri, a name they still re- 
tain. Vellum, the last substance to be men- 
tioned, is said to owe its origin to the follow- 


ing circumstance : Eumenes, king of Per- 


gamus, being' desirous of forming- a library* 
that should equal or exceed in number of 
volumes, the famed library at Alexandria, 
Ptolemy, with a view of rendering his design 
abortive, prohibited the exportation of the 
papyrus. This exciting the industry of some 
artists in the court of Eumenes, they con- 
trived a method of preparing the skins of 
sheep for the purpose, and it was called 
vellum, from vellus a skin, and parchment, 
from Pergamus, the place where the art of pre- 
paring it was discovered, or if not discovered, 
it was there improved, and first brought into 
general use. 

Umbram suam metuere. 

lie is afraid of his own shadow, said of per* 
sons \viio are so childishly timid, that they 
cannot be prevailed on to undertake the 
easiest, and most obviously useful business, 
fearing lest it should fail. To such subjects, 
and to such as live in a state of constant 
alarm, fearing almost impossible accidents, 
the following is also applicable. 


( 127 ) 

Quid si Cesium ruat ! 

What if the sky should fall ! " When the 
sky falls," we say jocularly, " then we may 
catch larks." 

Funem abrumpere, nimium fendendo. 

The chord stretched too tight will break, 
and the mind kept too long, and too intensely 
meditating on one subject, loses its spring 
and becomes feeble. 

" Cito rumpas arcum, semper si tensimi habueris, 
At si laxaris, cum voles, utilis erit." 

The mind must be occasionally relieved 
from its studies by amusement, to enable it to 
recover its strength, af?d render it fit for fur- 
ther exertion. The adage also admonishes, 
that we should not make too frequent appli- 
cation for assistance, to persons of liberal 
dispositions, who have already done as much 
as was convenient, or proper, that " we should 
not spur a willing horse." 


Quicquid in Buccam, vel in Linguam t-enerit, 


" He says whatever comes uppermost," or 
into his mind, but, " habla la boca, con qua 
paga la coca," " the tongue speaks at the 
head's cost." This is said of careless and 
inconsiderate persons, who think they shew 
their bravery by saying whatever they please, 
regardless whom they may offend ; but the 
Spaniard again says, " hablar sin pensar, es 
tirar sin encarar," " speaking without think- 
ing, is shooting without taking aim," and 
he who says all he has a mind to say, must 
expect to be told what he has no mind to 
hear. In a more honorable way, the adage 
applies to persons of integrity, who are inge- 
nuous, and open, and in all concerns of busi- 
ness, will speak the truth. But even from 
such it is not always well received. 

" Whoever speaks with plain sincerity, 
Is eyed by Fortune with a look askant; 
While some low fawning sycophant 
Wears every day a new attire, 
The friends of verity 
Go naked as the goddess they adrhire." 


( 129 ) 

Citra Pulverem, vel citra Laborem. 

Obtaining one's end without labour, or 
meeting with success far beyond our endea- 
vours. The adage was applied to fortunate 
persons, who were more prosperous than might 
have been expected from the little care and 
attention they paid to their business. " Citra 
arationem, citraque sementem," their lands 
proving productive, though but little cul- 

There are men, with whom every scheme 
or project in which they are engaged succeed, 
though they are not remarkable either for 
diligence or capacity. Such men are said, 
according to a familiar English proverb, " to 
be born with a silver spoon in their mouths." 
And " give a man luck," we say, " and throw 
him into the sea." From the not un frequent 
occurrences of such events, arises also the 
saying, " E meglio esser fortunato chesavio," 
" It is better to be born fortunate than wise ;" 
also, " Gutta fortune pras dolio sapientiie," 
the sense of which the French give in the fol- 
lowing, " Mieux vaut une once de fortune, 

K qu'une 

( 130 ) 

qiftme iivre de sagesse," an ounce of good 
fortune is better than a pound of wisdom. 
The proverb, " citra pulverem," without dust, 
seems to have taken its rise from the custom 
of sprinkling the bodies of wrestlers with 
dust, having first anointed them with oil. 
This was done with the view of stopping the 
pores, to prevent their being exhausted by 
perspiring too profusely. Antisthenes, one of 
the speakers in the Dialogue called the Ban- 
quet, of Xenophon, says, in allusion to this 
custom, " he might have as much land, per- 
haps, as would furnish a sufficiency of dust, 
to cover the body of a wrestler." Sir Francis 
Bacon, among his expedients for prolonging 
life, recommends taking daily small doses of 
nitre, to retard the circulation of the blood, 
and anointing the body with oil, to moderate 
the perspiration. Hist. Vitas et Mortis. 

Lydius Lapis, sive Heradius Lapis. 

A stone so called from Heraclea a city in 
Lydia, from whence it was brought. It was 


used to try pieces of metal, with the view of 
discovering whether they were gold, or silver, 
or what portion of those precious metals were 
contained in them, and the adage may be 
applied, metaphorically, to persons of acute 
sense, and sound judgment,- who are able to 
solve difficult, and intricate problems, or 

Ad Amussim. 

Made exactly by rule; said of any piece of 
work that is perfectly and correctly finished, 
or of a literary composition, in which the 
subject is judiciously and accurately treated. 

A d Unguem. 

Perfectly smooth, and polished. The phrase 
takes its rise from the workmen's passing their 
nail over a piece of work, to find if any in- 
equalities remain. 

Incudi redder e. 

Returned to the anvil, may be applied to 
K 2 any 

( 132 ) 

any work that is re-considered, and carefully 
corrected and improved. 

Indignus qui illl Matellam porrigat. 

This is used where there is a very great 
difference in the qualities and dispositions of 
the persons compared, and means, that the 
one is not fit to take off the shoes, or perform 
the meanest offices for the other. 

" Dispeream bi tu Pyladi prsestare matellam, 
Dignus es, aut porcos pascere Pirithoi." 

May I die, if you are worthy to be employed 
in feeding his hogs, or even in services more 
sordid and humiliating. 

etiam est Holitor valde opportuna lo- 

Even the opinion of a clown may be at- 
tended to with advantage. "Sa?pe est etiam 
sub pallio sordido sapientia," for wisdom not 
unfrequently exists under a squalid garment. 
" Tierra negra buen pan lleva," black land 
produces white bread, and " Debaxo de una 
mala capa, hay buen bebedo," under an old 


( 133 ) 

and tattered cloak, there may be a good 
drinker, that is, a man of understanding. The 
Spaniards say, when an old man, and with 
them old and wise seem to be synonymous, 
ceases to drink, he will soon cease to live. 
"Quando el viejo no puede beber, la huessa le 
pueden hazer," and " Quixadas sin barbas, no 
merecen ser honradas," chins without beards 
deserve no honour, which is only clue to age. 
Scepe etiam stultus fuit opportuna loquutus, 
as Erasmus corrects the adage, that is, Even a 
fool may frequently give good advice, which 
means no more, than that as a liar may some- 
times speak the truth, so may a fool utter a 
wise sentence. Rabelais had perhaps an eye 
to this adage, when he made Panurge take 
the advice of a fool on the subject of his 

Leonem Larva terres. 

Would you frighten a lion with a vizor or 

mask, may be said to weak and simple persons, 

attempting by noise and blustering, to terrify 

and alarm those who are greatly their superiors 

*3 in 

( 134 ) 

in strength and courage. " Do you think I 
M'as born in a wood to be scared by an owl ?" 

" Demens! qui nimbos et non imitabile fulmen, 
.Ere, et cornipedum cursu simularat equurum." 

Senseless man ! who could strive to imitate 
the storms and inimitable thunder of Jupiter, 
with the clatter of brazen cymbals, and the 
tramp of horses. 

Salem et Mensam ne pr&tereas. 
You must not neglect those who have been 
entertained at your table, or with whom you 
have eaten salt. This being contrary to the 
laws of hospitality. Salt, from its power of pre- 
serving bodies from putrefaction, was thought 
to have something in it of a divine nature, 
and was thence adopted as a symbol of per- 
petuity, and made use of as a mean to conci- 
liate friendship. In Ezra, we read, " we are 
salted with the salt of the palace," meaning, 
we are there nourished and supported ; and 
our Saviour calls his disciples " the salt of the 
earth," sent to preserve it, or to cure men of 
their corruption. The adage means the same 


( 135 ) 

as "Ne negligas amicitias consuetudinem, aut 
violes jura ejusdem." you must not omit the 
usages, or violate the rights of friendship. 
The dread which many of our good women 
feel on overturning a salt-cellar, is doubtless 
a relict of the veneration in which this sub- 
stance was anciently held. The ill omen which 
such an accident portends, is to be averted by 
throwing a few grains of the salt over one's 
shoulder; perhaps also the privilege which salt 
has obtained, of being made a convertible 
term for wit, derives its origin from the same 
source. The French say of two persons whose 
intimacy is not likely to be of long duration, 
" Elles ne mangeront pas un minot de sel 
ensemble," they will not eat a bushel of salt 
together. A late envoy from Tripoli, having 
recommended to the academy in Sweden, to 
send some of their members to examine the 
plants and other productions of his country, 
said, " that in return for the bread and salt he 
had received among them, he would give every 
assistance in his power, in forwarding their 
inquiries." The Germans held in the same 
respect, persons with whom they had partici- 
K 4 patetl 

( 136 ) 

patecl in the pleasure of drinking wine, and 
time has not diminished in them, their reve- 
rence for this delightful beverage. 

Ne quicquam sapit, qui sibi non sapit. 

The man is not to be esteemed wise, who is 
not wise or prudent in the management of his 
own concerns, who, intent on the business 
of others, suffers his own to fall to decay. 
On the other hand, the selfish man, whose 
thoughts are solely employed in advancing 
his own interest, " who would set his neigh- 
bour's house on fire, merely to roast his eggs," 
is still more to be blamed. " It is a poor 
centre of a man's actions," Lord Verulam 
says, " himself, and it does not ordinarily 
succeed well with such persons; for, as they 
have all their lives sacrificed to themselves, 
they become in the end sacrifices to the 
inconstancy of fortune, whose wings they 
thought by their self- wisdom to have pini- 
oned." Still, however, we must take care, 
" not to bulge our own vessel, in attempting 
to raise that of our neighbour," for, "La carita 


( 137 ) 

comincia prima da se steffo," chanty begins 
at home. 

Neque Mel, neque Apes. 

No bees, no honey. Every convenience 
hath its concomitant inconvenience; if we are 
averse to bearing the one, we ought not to 
expect to enjoy the other. " If we would 
have eggs, we must bear with the cackling of 
the hen." " Non s' e rosa senza spine," the 
rose has its prickles, and the bee its sting, 
their sweets therefore are not to be obtained 
without some hazard. 

" Feras quod laedit, ut quod prodest perferas." 
" You must bear pain, if you look for gain." 

" Dii nobis laboribus omnia vendunt," the 
goods of fortune are not given, but sold to 
us ; that is, they are only to be attained by 
labour and industry, and yet we say, " He 
pays clear for honey, that licks it from the 


( 138 ) 

Facile qiium valemus, recta Consilia JE grot is 


When free from trouble ourselves, we readily 
give advice to those who are afflicted, which 
in a similar situation, would not occur to us, 
or probably we should not be disposed to 
follow, though admonished to it by our nearest 

" "Pis each man's office to speak patience 

To those who wring under the load of sorrow; 
But no man's virtue or sufficiency 
To be so moral, when lie shall endure 
The like himself." 

The Oracle being asked, what was the most 
difficult thiny;? answered, "to know our- 

O * 

selves." What the most easy? "to give 
advice to others." 

In monendo sapimus omnes, verum ubi 
Peccamus ipsi, non videmus propria." 

For though we easily espy the faults of others, 
and are very ready in admonishing them, yet 
we do not easily admit that we are guilty of 
similar errors, and are thence apt to consider 
f the admonition of our friends, as impertinent, 

and unnecessary. 

" Peras 

( 139 ) 

" Peras iraposuit Jupiter nobis duas, 

Propriis repletam vitiis, post tergurn dedit, 
Alienis ante pectus suspendit gravem. 
Hac re, videre nostra mala non possumus, 
Alii siraul delinquunt censores sumus." 

Jupiter gives to each of us, the Poet says, two 
wallets, the one filled with the errors of our 
neighbours, the other with our own. That 
containing the errors of our neighbours, hangs 
to our breasts, but that filled with our own, 
rests on our backs. Hence it is, that though 
we are well acquainted with the vices of others, 
yet we are commonly ignorant of those prac- 
tised by ourselves. 

Quod supra nos, nihll ad nos. 

This was a saying of Socrates, intimating 
that we should not trouble ourselves by in- 
quiring into matters that do not concern us; 
into mysteries that are beyond our compre- 
hension ; as, how the heavens and the earth 
were formed ; whether, or by whom, the stars 
were inhabited ; how far distant from us are 
the Pleiades, or any other of the constellations ; 


( 140 ) 

the depth of the sea; the nature of space; or 
whether there exists such a thing as pure 
space ; the mystery of the Trinity, which the 
boy told St. Austin, " he would understand, 
then, when he should be able to lave the sea 
dry," or numerous other similar inquiries, 
which would be of little use if they could 
be discovered, but upon which many volumes 
have been written, neglecting, in the mean 
while, to inquire what might make men more 
quiet, contented, and happy ; or might tend 
to remove the misery and distress with which 
the world is overwhelmed. 

Qua infra nos, nihil ad nos. 
As we are admonished by the preceding 
aphorism, not to employ our minds too sedu- 
lously in acquiring a knowledge of things 
placed far beyond our reach, by this we are 
advised not with too much anxiety to seek 
after worldly wealth, as large and splendid 
houses, rich furniture, clothes, and diet, which, 
as they contribute little or nothing to our 
happiness, should be deemed unworthy our 


( 141 ) 

Refrkare Cicatrlcem. 

To open a wound afresh, which had been 
but lately skinned over, and is therefore very 
susceptible of injury ; metaphorically, to re- 
mind any one of a past misfortune. It is a 
mark of absence of mind, inattention, or ill- 
nature, to revive in conversation the memory 
of circumstances, in which any of the com- 
pany had been concerned, and which had been 
the subject of much distress and uneasiness to 
them. " No se ha de mentar la soga, en casa 
del ahorcado," we should not talk of a halter, 
in a house whence any one had been hanged. 
" Refricare memoriam," to rub up the memory 
of any one," who is disposed to forget his en- 
gagement, or promise. 

Nullus Hits Nasus est, et, obesce Naris Homo. 

They have no nose, or they would have 
smelt it out. They are dull, heavy, stupid, 
void of ingenuity or sagacity. " Emunctre 
naris homo," that is, he is a man of a clear 
head, of quick sense, and sound judgment. 


( 142 ) 

The sense of smelling has perhaps been taken, 
preferably to any of the other senses, though 
they are all occasionally used, to denote the 
perfection or imperfection of the understand- 
ing, from observing the different value that is 
put upon dogs, in proportion as they have 
this sense more or less perfect. " Olet lucer- 
nam," it smells of the lamp, is said of any 
work on which much pains have been be- 
stowed to make it perfect. " Mener par le 
nez," to lead any one by the nose ; or, to have 
such influence over him, as to make him say, 
do, or believe, whatever we please. 

JEdibus in nostris, qucK prava, aut recta 

Look to your own household, see that no 
disorders prevail there. Before we employ our 
minds on objects that do not concern us, or 
in studies from which no profit can be ob- 
tained, we should see that all is well at home, 
that there are no disorders to be corrected, 
which neglected may occasion mischief. He 
who neglects this may be said to be, 

" Procul 

( 143 ) 
" Procul videns, sed cominus videns nihil." 

Looking after distant objects, which do not 
concern him, and neglecting those that are at 
hand, and in which he is nearly interested. 
The astrologer who pretended to tell the for- 
tunes of his neighbours, did not see the pit 
which lay at his feet, and into which he fell. 

" Tendens in alta, amice, terrain non vides, 
Cupidus futuri, fis rudis praebentium." 

Intent on examining the stars, in which you 
had no concern, you neglected what lay at 
your feet. Too desirous of looking into the 
future, you saw nothing of the disaster imme- 
diately threatening you. 

In $e descendere. 

This is to the same purport as the last adage, 
and there are many more inculcating the same 
doctrine, that we should be more careful in ex- 
amining into our own conduct, and less curious 
in inquiring into, and censuring the defects of 
others. " Rarum est enim ut satis se quisque 
vereatur," for there are few men who have so 
much reverence for themselves, as to avoid 


( 144 ) 


doing wrong from the fear of self-reproach. 
The silent and internal questioning our own 
secret motives for action, would lead us to 
set a true value on our conduct, by directing 
us to the springs from whence it proceeded. 
It would besides afford a resource to hours 
that a man may find heavy on his hands, and 
thus employed, he may boldly say with the 
philosopher, that he is " nunquam minus 
solus, quam cum solus," he is never less alone 
than when alone. 

<( Ut nemo in sese tentat descendere nemo, 
Sed praecedenti spectatur mantica tergo.'' 

How little solicitous we are in inquiring into 
our own errors, and how intent on espying 
those of our neighbours. 

Festucam ex alterius Oculo ejicere. 

Solicitous to remove a small defect from the 
eye of your neighbour, regardless of a much 
greater one in your own. But, " thou fool, 
first take the beam from thine own eye, and 
then thou mayest see clearly to remove the 
mote from thy neighbour's eye." 

" Qui 

" Qui ne tuberibus propriis offendat amicum 
Postulat, ignoscat verrucis illius." 

He who requires of his friend that he should 
not notice his greater blemishes, should be 
careful not to censure smaller errors that he 
may discern in him. 

Te cum habita, and 
Infra tuam Pelliculam te confine. 

Be contented with your own skin. An ass 
having put on the skin of a lion, for a time 
struck terror into all who beheld him, but the 
cheat being at length discovered, he was hoot- 
ed, and laughed at, and then cudgelled to death. 
The ancients seem to hav thought that they 
could not too frequently or too seriously in- 
culcate the necessity of turning our attention 
to ourselves. Look, the adage intimates, into 
your own affairs : live as becomes your cir- 
cumstances and fortune, and do not model 
your expenses by those of persons of much 
larger estates : " on doit avoir la robe selon le 
froid," we should cut our coat according to 
our cloth ; " stretch your arm no further 
L than 

( 146 ) 

than your sleeve will reach ;" and " let your 
purse be your master." This may be used to 
restrain those whose notions are too lofty and 
aspiring, who hazard what they actually pos- 
sess in hunting after an increase of fortune, or 
of preferment, which, if acquired, would add 
little to their comfort, for " honour and ease 
are seldom bed-fellows," and, " he that in- 
creaseshis riches increases his sorrow." Though 
the world is indulgent enough to look upon 
the debaucheries and even the vices of the 
wealthy with complacency, yet when men in 
inferior situations presume to follow their ex- 
amples, they are always held in extreme con- 
tempt. The ass attempting to imitate the 
playfulness and familiarity of the spaniel, in- 
stead of caresses met with a cudgel. 

Nosce te ipsiim. 

Know thyself. If men would search diligent* 
ly their owi\minds,and examine minutely their 
thoughts and actions, they would be more cau- 
tious in censuring the conduct of others, as 
they would find in themselves abundantly suf- 

( 147 ) 

ficient cause for reproof. " It is a good horse 
that never stumbles ;" and he is a good man 
indeed who cannot reproach himself with nu- 
merous slips and errors. " Every bean has its 
black," and every man his follies and vices. 
The adage also teaches us to set a proper 
value upon ourselves, and to be careful not to 
do any thing that may degrade us. It is not 
known to whom we are indebted for this 
golden rule ; we only learn that it is of very 
long standing, and was held in such high es- 
timation by the ancients, that it was placed 
over the doors of their temples, and it was 
also supposed by them, that " E coelo descen- 
dit," it came down from heaven. 

" ' Man know thyself !' this precept from on high. 
Came down, imagined by the Deity ; 
Oh! be the words indelibly imprest 
On the live tablet of each human breast. 
Through every change of many colour'd life, 
Whether thou seek'st a blessing in a wife ; 
Or in the senate dost aspire to stand 
'Mid holy Wisdom's venerable band, 
Still from the Gods forget not to implore 
Self-knowledge, for thy bosom's monitor." 

HODGSON'S Juvenal. 

i-2 Ne 

( 148 ) 

Ne quid nimis. 

Too much even of the best of things will 

" The sweetest honey 
Is loathsome in its own deliciousness." 

The story that pleased when first heard, by 
frequent repetition becomes disgusting. We 
should learn to keep the golden mean, and 
neither passionately praise nor violently de- 
claim against any one. 

" Ne nimis aut laudes Tydida, aut vituperes me." 

For as there are no men totally free from im- 
perfections, so there are few so vicious but 
they have some good qualities. The same 
rule should guide us in ever} 7 part of our com- 
merce with the world ; we should be neither 
too gay nor too slovenly in our apparel, nor 
too liberal nor too sparing in our expenses; 
but let every thing be adapted to our circum- 
stances and situation in life. " L' abondanza 
delle cose, ingenera fastidio," too much even 
of a good thing creates disgust; and " assez 
y a, si trop n'y a," there is enough, where 


( 149 ) 

there is not too much ; and " enough," we 
say, " is as good as a feast." 

Sponde, Noxa pr&sto est. 

Become surety, and danger is near at hand, 
or " be bail and pay for it." " He shall be 
sore vexed that is surety for a stranger, and 
he that hateth suretyship is sure." As it is 
not possible, perhaps, in all cases and situa- 
tions to avoid being responsible for others, it 
may be right to fix some rules to guide us in 
this dangerous adventure, for dangerous it 
must, even under the most favourable circum- 
stances, be esteemed, as by that act we engage 
that the party for whom we are security shall 
be frugal, industrious and honest ; and if 
he fails in any of those points, we subject 
ourselves to pay or make good any deficien- 
cies that may occur through his misfortune, 
inattention or delinquency. The person there- 
fore, for whom we purpose being bound, (a 
strong term,) should be one of tried fidelity, 
whom we have long known, and in whose wel- 
fare, either as being a near relation or an inti- 
L 3 mate 

( 150 ; 

mate friend, we feel ourselves strongly inte- 
rested ; to this should also be added, that the 
sum for which we become surety, be not so 
large that the loss of it would materially injure 
ourselves or family : " we should so light 
another's candle as not to extinguish our 
own." " Ni fiez, ni porfies, ni apuestes, ni 
prestes, y viviras entre las gentes," that is, 
neither be surety, nor contend, nor lay wagers, 
nor lend, and you will be esteemed in the 
world. Most men are aware of the danger of 
being security, but they have not sufficient 
confidence to withstand solicitation, they yield 
therefore often against their better judgment. 
This silly bashfulness, an error most incident 
to ingenuous young men, should be strenu- 
ously resisted. He who has not learnt to 
deny, is only half educated ; he should be put 
under guardians as one not yet of age, and 
unfit to manage his own concerns. In all 
cases, where the business is of magnitude, we 
should require time before we comply ; and if 
after due consideration, we find that our com- 
pliance might involve us in difficulties, we 
should take care not to suffer our determina- 

tion to be shaken by any further solicitation ; 
we may then say with the poet, 

" Tis better, Sir, I should you now displease, 
Than by complying, risque my future ease." 

Duabus sedcre Sellis. 

" Avoir le cul entre deux selles," " between 
two stools we ofttimes come to the ground." 
Irresolute persons who adopt neither side of a 
proposition, or who are desirous of being well 
with both parties in any contest, as they oblige 
neither are generally despised by both. Ci- 
cero fell a sacrifice to such indecisive conduct. 
Solon established a law, inflicting a severe 
punishment on persons refusing to take a part 
in public commotions : by such secession the 
country was deprived of the advice and assist- 
ance of the very persons by whose prudence 
much of the mischief attending: n civil dis- 


sensions might be prevented ; or if they could 
not entirely appease the tumult by joining 
with the party favouring the good of their 
country, they would contribute to their suc- 

L 4 Nescts 

quid serus Vesper vehat. 

You know not what the evening may 
produce, or how the present appearances may 
be changed : no business shoulc^ be depend- 
ed on during its progress, we must wait for 
its completion before we give our opinion 
of it ; for, " la fin couronne Toeuvre," " it is 
the end that crowns the whole." Though 
the morning be fair, the evening may be 
dark and cloudy; though the business began 
with favourable auspices and seemed to pro- 
mise a happy conclusion, it may still fail ; or 
though the early part of our lives be prosper- 
ous, the end may be most disastrous and un- 
happy. " La vita il fine, e '1 di loda sera," 
the end commends the life, the evening the 
day : " do not halloo, therefore," we say, 
" until you are out of the wood ;" that is, un- 
til you have completely escaped the danger. 

" Prosperity doth bewitch men, seeming clear; 

But seas laugh, and shew white when rocks are near." 

Simla , 

( 153 ) 

Simla, Simla est, etiamsl aurea gestet Insignia. 

An ape is an ape, though dressed in the 
most splended apparel, or 

" An ape is an ape, a varlet's a varlet, 
Though they be clad in silk or scarlet." 

This may be applied to persons who, born 
and educated among the common people, on 
being advanced by fortune, affect the manners 
of gentlemen, but imitate them so wretchedly, 
as easily to shew the baseness of the state 
from which they have been raised. " One 
would think that nature's journeymen had 
made them, they imitate humanity so abomi- 
nably." " Asperius nihil est, humili cum 
surgit in altum," which may be best rendered 
by our English adage, " Set a beggar on 
horseback, and he will ride to the devil." "Tu 
fai come la simia, die piu va in alto, pin 
mostra il cula," that is, " an ape, the higher 
he climbs, the more he shews his tail." 
" Aunque la mona se vista de seda, mona se 
queda," although the monkey clothes her- 
self in silk, she is still a monkey. 


( 154 ) 

Ira omnium tardissime scnescit. 

Anger becomes old, that is, yields, or gives 
way slowly. When the mind is inflamed to 
rage, the impression is long in wearing out. 
" Cui placet, obliviscitur ; cui dolet, meminit ;" 
acts of kindness are soon forgotten, hut the 
memory of an offence remains. " Favours 
are written on glass, injuries on stone." 
" Segnius homines bonaquam mala sentiunt," 
affronts affect us more keenlv, make a strong. 

*> ' O 

er impression on us, than kindness ; and u Bo- 
cado comido, no gana amigo," the morsel that 
is eaten, gains no friends. There are some 
men of such irritable dispositions, that the 
slightest opposition will excite this turbulent 
passion, and it not unfrequently happens that 
in their rage, they say, or do, what will not 
be forgotten, or cannot easily be remedied. 
Anger has therefore been not improperly 
called " a short madness," " Ira brevis furor," 
or, " una collera subitanea, e una pazzia 
passegera," men under the influence of an- 
ger being as intractable as those who are 
insane ; " Sa3va animi tempestas," a cruel 


( 155 ) 

tempest of the mind, making the eyes dart 
fire, the teeth gnash, and the tongue to falter. 
How necessary therefore to check it in its 
commencement, and hefore it rises to that 
ungovernahle height. 

" give me that man 

That is not passion's slave, and I will wear him 
In my heart's core, ay in my heart of hearts." 

Pythagoras advises to efface the print of 
the caldron in the ashes, after it has 
boiled ; intimating that we should not persist 
in our anger, but after the first ebullition, 
endeavour to restrain and subdue it. Plato 
being about to punish a servant who had 
offended him, raised his hand for the purpose 
but checking himself, and yet keeping his 
hand lifted up, as if in the act of striking, 
a friend who was present asked what he was 
going to do, " I am about," says he, " to 
chastise an angry man." In all contentions 
or disputes, when we find we are becoming 
warm, it would be wise to retire, or give up 
the contest. 

" When two discourse, if the one's anger rise, 
Then he who lets the contest fall, is wise." 


In Vino Veritas. 

" La verclad esta en el vino," and ' Dans 
le vin on dit la ve"riteV' Wine opens the heart 
and makes us speak the truth. " Vin dentro, 
senno fuora," that is, " When wine is in, wit 
is out." " II vino non ha temone," " wine 
hath no helm or rudder." " El vino no trae 
bragas, ni de paiio, ni de lino," " wine wears 
no breeches, neither woollen, nor linen." Men 
intoxicated with wine, are easily led to betray 
their most secret thoughts. " Quod in corde 
sobrii, id in lingua ebrii," " what we think 
when sober, when drunk we blab." " As fire 
discovers the properties of gold, so wine lays 
open the hearts of men ;" and certainly in a 
state of ebriety, we have so little command 
over ourselves, that there are few things, even 
those regarding our personal safety, which a 
crafty man might not extract from us. 

Though drinking to excess, is in general 
improper, and we can hardly conceive a more 
despicable character than an habitual sot, 
yet occasional intemperance in this way may 
be excused. " Nonnunquam," Seneca says, 

" usque 

*' usque ad ebrietatem veniendum, non ut 
mergat nos, sed ut deprimat curas," some- 
times we may extend our draught even to 
intoxication, not that the wine may drown us, 
but that it may drown our cares. It was for 
that purpose we are to suppose that Cato had 
such frequent recourse to the bottle. 

" Narratur et prisci Catonis, 
Saspe mero caluisse virtus." 

Sylvius, an eminent French physician, 
thought that taking wine to intoxication 
once in a month, might be useful in strength- 
ening the/ligestive power of the stomach; and 
the late Dr. Cadogan, who lived to a great 
age, is said to have approved, and to have 
followed this regimen. 

" Qu'il faut a chaque niois, 
Du rnoins s'enyvre une fois." 

We should get drunk, at the least, once in a 
month. This is an old French proverb, fa- 
thered, I know not on what authority, upon 
Hippocrates. But as some men are quarrel- 
some when intoxicated, it is right, to remind 
them, " That he that kills a. man when he is 
drunk, must be hanged for it when he is 


sober." " He that drinks all night, and is 
hanged betimes in the morning, will sleep the 
soundlier all the next day," is one of our 
jocular proverbs ; as is, " The man was hang- 
ed, who left his drink behind him ;" though 
this is said to have been done by a thief, on 
hearing that he was pursued. He was taken, 
we are to suppose, and hanged. Of such stuff, 
are some of our old proverbs made. " Drunk- 
en folks seldom take harm," is as true perhaps 
as " Naught, though often in danger, is sel- 
dom hurt." Neither of them will bear a very 
exact scrutiny. Not alien to the purport of 
this adage are the following lines, 

" Dives eram dudum, fecerunt me tria nudum, 
Alea, Vina, Venus, per quse sum factus egenus." 

I was rich and prosperous, but gaming, 
wine, and women have reduced me to misery, 
Either of them singly, if followed up, would 
be sufficient to produce that effect. 

Bos in Lingua. 

He has an ox on his tongue. The Athenians 
had a piece of money stamped with the figure 


of an ox, whence any one who was bribed to 
be silent, was said to have an ox on his 
tongue. The adage was also applied generally 
to persons who, restrained by fear, or from 
motives of prudence, avoided giving their 
opinion on any subject. It is said to have 
taken its rise from the following circumstance. 
Demosthenes having received a present from 
the Milesians, who wished to obtain some 
favour from his countrymen, which they were 
apprehensive he would oppose, appeared in 
the court, with his throat muffled, pretending 
that he had so violent a cold, as to be inca- 
pable of speaking ; but one of the members of 
the court, suspecting the trick, observed to 
his brethren, that " Demosthenes had an ox 
on his tongue," intimating that it was not a 
cold, but a bribe that prevented him from 
speaking. The people of /Egina had a piece 
of money stamped with the figure of a snail, 
with this motto, " Virtutem et sapientiam, 
vincunt testudines," that is, money is more 
powerful than valour or wisdom* 


( 160 ) 

Cur r us Bovem trahlt. 

" Placing the cart," we say, " before the 
horse," literally, The car draws the oxen. 
This may be applied to any thing that is con- 
ducted preposterously ; to children affecting 
to instruct their parents, pupils their masters; 
also to persons beginning a business before 
they have well considered it, or spending a 
fortune before it is come into their possession, 
which is, " Eating the calf in the cow's belly.'* 
It happens when a waggon going down a 
steep hill drags the cattle, instead of being 
drawn by them, which gave rise to the adage. 

Pennas incidere alicui. 

To clip any one's wings, to check him in 
his career, " To take him a peg lower," ne- 
cessary sometimes to be done to persons who 
are too obtrusive and forward ; who assume a 
state, and consequence, that does not belong 
to them, or who thrust themselves into busi- 
ness in which they have no concern. 


Omnia idem Pulvis. 

\Ve are all made of the same materials, 
"ejusdem farinas," of the same dust, and in 
the grave there is no mark by which we may 
distinguish the dust of the king from that of 
the clown. As the philosophers rarely sought 
after, and therefore seldom acquired wealth, 
they were frequent in admonishing the great 
men of the world of this truth, " that death 
levels all distinctions," and that " Pobreza no 
es vileza," poverty is no disgrace. 

I dreamt, that buried in my native clay, 

Close by a common beggar's side I lay : 

And as so mean a neighbour shock'd my pride, 

Thus like a corpse of consequence I cried 

" Scoundrel, begone! and henceforth touch me not; 

" More manners learn, and at a distance rot." 

" How ! scoundrel!" in a haughtier tone cried he ; 

" Proud lump of dirt, I scorn thy words and thee ; 

" Here all are equal now my case is thine, 

" That is thy rotting place, and this is mine." 

The phrase, " He is of the same kidney, 
stamp, or mould," is never used by us but to 
designate a worthless character. 

M Anulus 

( 162 ) 
Anulus aureus in Naribus Suls. 

It is putting a ring of gold into a swine's 
snout, or " casting pearls before swine," may be 
said to any one talking learnedly before persons 
who are illiterate, or giving rich and gaudy 
clothes to one who is old and decrepid ; 
which, instead of adorning, would only serve 
-to make him ridiculous. " As a jewel of gold 
in a swine's snout, so is a fair woman without 

In eburna Vagina, plumbeus Gladius. 

This is putting a leaden sword into an ivory 
scabbard, was the observation of Diogenes the 
cynic, on hearing very foul language come 
from the mouth of an elegant young man. 
Matching, and bringing together things en- 
tirely dissimilar, as Hercules and an ape, the 
one excelling in strength and courage, the 
other only noticed for his foolish gestures, 
and mischievous tricks, renders the parties 
subject to the censure implied in this, and the 
preceding adages. 

( 163 ) 

Artem quavis alit Terra. 

The arts are of every country, or every 
country is willing to encourage them. Men 
of knowledge, particularly in any of the arts 
that administer to the necessities, or con- 
venience of mankind, find themselves at home 
in every country. The poet Simonicles, seeing 
all the passengers in a vessel in which he was 
sailing, and which was in danger of sinking, 
collecting their valuables, said, " Omnia mea 
mecum porto," I carry all my valuables about 
me, let me but escape drowning, and I have 
nothing to fear. " Quien tiene arte, va por 
toda parte," he who has learned any art, may 
live in any place, every country being ready 
to entertain such inmates. " El villano en su 
tierra, y el hidalgo donde quiera," the clown 
in his own country, the gentleman where he 
pleases; his education qualifying him to live 
in any country. 

A teneris Unguiculis, Ab Incunabulis, Cum 
Lacte Nut rids. 

It was his disposition from earliest infancy, 
M 2 he 

( 164 ) 

he shewed it when in his cradle, he sucked it 
in with his mother's milk. There appears to 
be a character in some individuals, implanted 
by nature itself, which neither precept nor ex- 
ample can alter. Persons related to each other 
by the nearest ties of consanguinity ; nursed 
and educated under the same auspices ; en- 
joying the same advantages, stimulated to 
action by the same difficulties, have been, 
found as dissimilar, as if their characters had 
been formed in climates and regions, and 
under circumstances the most remote. He 
who will reason on the above motto, will find 
ample subject of discussion in the brothers 
Titus and Domitian, Julian and Gallus. 

Omnes attrahens ut magnes Lapis. 

Drawing every thing to it, like the load- 
stone. Persons of mild and placid disposi- 
tions, conciliate the most rugged and harsh 
tempers, as the magnet attracts iron. 

" Ita facillime 
Sine invidia laudem invenias, et amicos pares." 


( 165 ) 

By such dispositions men easily acquire a 
good name without envy, and procure to 
themselves friends. 

Magis magni Clerici non sunt magis sapicntes. 

The greatest clerks, or scholars, are not the 
wisest men ; that is, they have not the greatest 
share of that wisdom which is necessary for 
conducting their worldly concerns. To excel 
in any art, it is necessary tlfat our attention 
be applied to it, if not exclusively, at the 
least that it occupy a larger share of it than 
any other subject. The man who engages in 
the pursuit of literature, will find he has little 
time to bestow on any other object ; the 
acquisition of money will be with him a sub- 
ordinate concern ; he has been taught in the 
course of his studies, to consider it as of little 
value, and by no means to be put in com- 
petition with what he has chosen; no wonder 
therefore that he is no favourite of fortune, 
to whom he never paid his court, or that, 
others, whom he considers, and the world 
M 3 agrees 

agrees in placing beneath him, receive a larger 
portion of her goods, than fall to his lot. Of 
what use, Tasso's father asked him, after 
chiding him for neglecting the study of the 
law, which he had recommended, of what use 
is this philosophy, with which you are so en- 
amoured ? " It has enabled me, sir," Tasso 
replied, " to bear the harshness of your re- 
proof;" and Aristotle, being asked the same 
question, said, " to do willingly, and from a 
conviction of its propriety, what others do on 

In tuo Regno es. 

You are on your own ground, surrounded 
by your friends, or you would not have dared 
to have insulted me, or in your own house 
where it is not civil to contradict you. " Chien 
sur son fumier est hardi," every dog is brave 
on his own dunghill. " Chacun est roi en 
^a maison," every man is king in his own 
house, and " under my cloak," the Spaniards 
say, "a fig for the king;" or, which is also 
one of their sayings, " Tan seor es cada uno 


( 167 ) 

en su casa, como el rey de sus alcavalas,' 
every man is as much master in his house A as 

the king is of his taxes. 

Fontes ipsi sit hint. 

Even the fountains complain of being thirs*' 
ty. The proverb may be applied to persons 
who greedily hunt after the goods of fortune, 
though they abound in them, or who require 
of their friends articles \vhich they might take 
from their own stores. Cicero applied it in 
this way to his brother, who had asked him 
for verses, which he was himself much more 
capable of making. Juvenal says, if Cicero, 
who was as contemptible as a poet, as he was 
great as a pleader, had made verses instead of 
orations, he might have preserved his head. 
The following is given as a specimen of his 

" O fortunatam natam, me consule, Romam," 
which is thus rendered by Dry den, 

" Fortune fortuneri the failing state of Rome, 
While I thy consul sole, consoled thy doom;" 

>i 4 for 

( 16*8 ) 

for which he might have been whipped at 
school, but would have been in no danger of 

losing his head. 

Lumen Soli mutuum das. 

Affecting to explain things that are of 
themselves abundantly clear and intelligible, 
or to instruct persons in matters in which they 
are well informed, is like holding a light to the 
sun " Holding," Shakespeare says, "thy far- 
thing candle to the sun." 

In Sylvam Lignaferre. 

" Porter de Teau a la mer," carrying wood 
to the forest, coals to Newcastle, or water to 
the ocean. Adding to the stores of those who 
already abound, or aiding those who have no 
need of assistance, and neglecting persons who 
are in real want, subjects any one to the cen- 
sure implied in this adage. 


( 169 ) 

Velocem tardus assequitur. 

" The race is not to the swift, nor the battle 
to the strong." Ingenuity and perseverance 
will often prevail over strength and swiftness, 
as the slow tortoise won the race against the 
swift hare. The adage may be used whenever 
we find persons of weak intellects, or of no 
great strength, or agility, advancing them- 
selves above others who are far superior to 
them in those qualities. 

Nosce Tempus. 

" Cada cosa en su tiempo, y nabos en Ad- 
viento," every thing in its season, and turnips 
in Advent. Choose the proper season. "Make 
hay while the sun shines." A maxim of great 
importance in life. A thing proper in itself, 
if unseasonably done, may be mischievous. 
The golden ball is held out to every man once 
in his life, if not then laid hold of, it may 
never again be offered. "Accasca in un punto, 
quel che non accasca in cento anni," that may 
happen in a moment, which may not again 
occur in an hundred years, therefore " keep 


( 170 ) 

your hook always baited," that is, be always 
prepared, for as Shakespeare has well noted, 

" There is a tide in the affairs of men, 

Which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune; 
Omitted, all the voyage of their life, 
Is bound in shallows, and in miseries." 

The ancients pictured Time with wings on his 
feet, and standing on a wheel ; with a lock of 
hair on his forehead, but bald behind ; inti- 
mating, that time was perpetually moving, and 
once suffered to pass by, it could not be re- 
called. Hence we are admonished, " to take 
Time by the forelock. " 

" elapsum semel,- 

Non ipse possit Jupiter reprehendere." 

For, if suffered to escape, not Jupiter himself 
can reclaim him. 

Olet Lucernam. 

" It smells of the lamp." The ancients used 
lamps when they studied by night, therefore 
any discourse or work, that was extremely 
elaborated and polished, was said to smell of 
the lamp, or to have had bestowed upon it the 
" JLimjE labor et mora." 


( 171 ) 

Nocte latent Mendce. 

Faults, or defects, in the complexion or form 
of women, are concealed by darkness. " Ne 
femina, ne tela a lume de candela," \yomen, 
and linen, shew best by candle-light. Night 
also throws her cloak over evil actions. Hence 
the Spaniards say, " La noche es capa des 

Mafe parta, mate dilabuntur. 

" 111 gotten, ill spent. " " Lightly come, 
lightly go," and " what is gotten over the 
devil's back, is spent under his belly." Riches 
obtained by unjust means, are frequently squan- 
dered in vicious and disgraceful pursuits. 

" What is well got, may meet with disaster, 

But what is ill got, destroys both itself and its master." 

" La farina del Diavolo, va tutta in crusca," 
the devil's meal turns all to chaff. "Vien pres- 
to consummate, 1'ingiustamente acquistato," 
what is unjustly acquired, is quickly con- 
sumed. Juvenal, more consonant perhaps to 
common experience, says, 

" De raal quaesitis, vix gaudet tertius haeres." 


The fortune that is acquired by fraud or rapine, 
scarcely descends to the third generation. 

There is something curious in pursuing thjs 
simple, moral observation into real history. 
Of all the companions of William the Con- 
queror, who obtained the chief military digni- 
ties under his jurisdiction, it is worth observ- 
ing, that hardly any one had any immediate 
male descendants in the third generation. 
When Henry the Second ascended the throne 
in 1154, only seventy years after the Con- 
queror's death, there was no earl in England, 
descended in the male line from one who had 
been an earl under the Conqueror. The Con- 
queror himself, as is well known, faad no male 
issue in the third generation. Alexander and 
Caesar had no descendants. Will the Emperor 
of the French prove an exception to Juvenal's 
observation ? 

OccultcB Musices nullus Respectus. 

Talents that are concealed, are of no use. 
Though a man shall have cultivated his mind 
with the greatest care, and shall have acquired 

a large 

( 173 ) 

a large portion of knowledge, if opportunity 
be wanted of producing it to the public, he 
will reap little profit from his attainments. 

" Scire tuum nihil est, nisi te scire hoc, sciat alter." 

There is little pleasure in knowing any subject, 
unless we are satisfied that others know that 
we are in possession of such knowledge. To 
make learning useful, it must be communi- 
cated. "Take from the philosopher," Rousseau 
says, "the pleasure of being heard, and his 
desire for knowledge ceases." Seneca carries 
this still further. " Si cum hac exceptione 
detur sapientia, ut illam inclusam teneam, 
nee enunciem, rejiciam, " if wisdom were 
offered to me, on this condition, that I should 
not communicate it, I would not accept it. 
" Quis enim virtutem ipsam amplectitur, pras- 
mia si tollas ?" for who would embrace even 
virtue itself, but for the attending reward ? 

Lupi ilium priores viderunt. 

The wolves have seen him ; or, which is 
more consonant to the English adage, " He 
has seen a wolf," and to the French, " II a vu 


( 174 ) 

le loup," which was said of any one, who, bold 
and forward with his tongue, became suddenly- 
less talkative and intrusive. 

" Edere non poteris vocem, lupus est tibi visus." 
You are silent, I perceive, you have seen a wolf. 

It was anciently believed that the wolf, by 
some occult power, struck those whom it 
looked on dumb, as the basilisk was said to 
strike them blind. The adage, as it is now 
used, is supposed to have taken its rise from 
a story in Theocritus, who relates that a lover 
was suddenly struck dumb, in the midst of 
his courtship, by the appearance of a rival, 
named Lycus, which in the Greek language is 
the name of a wolf. 

Una Hirundo non efficit Ver. 
" Una golondrina no haze verano," and in 
French, for the adage is every where known, 
"Une hirondelle ne fait pas le printems," 
" One swallow does not make a summer." One 
single piece of good or bad fortune should not 
greatly raise or depress us, what folloM^s may 
be of a different complexion. From a single 
act of liberality, or the contrary, we should 


( 175 ) 

not, generally, form our opinion of the dis- 
position of a man, or from a single speech, of 
his learning or ability. A few warm days 
occurring in the winter, brought a swallow, it 
is said, from his hiding-place, which being seen 
by a prodigal young man, he parted with his 
cloak, but the frost returning, he soon felt the 
want of his garment, and found to his cost, 
that " cue swallow did not make a summer," 
which thence, it is said, became proverbial. 
" Guarda el sayo," the Spaniards say, " para 
Mayo," do not leave off your great coat until 
May, or you will be obliged to take to it again. 

In utramvis dormire Aurem. 

He may sleep on either ear. His fortune 
is made, he may now sleep at his ease ; or as 
we say, " His name is up, he may go to bed." 
" Bonne renomme'e vaut mieux que ceinture 
dore'e," a good name is rather to be chosen 
than riches; though the French proverb is 
founded on an old law among them, prohibit- 
ing any but women of good fame, from wear- 
ing a golden girdle. We sleep more soundly 


and quietly lying on one side, than on the back. 
To sleep on either ear, means to enjoy undis- 
turbed repose, which those only, whose minds 
are free from care, may expect. But how few 
can boast of this exemption ! Withers, an in- 
different poet in the time of James the First, 
was used to say, " Nee habeo, nee careo, nee 
euro," I neither have any thing, want any 
thing, nor care for any thing. But he must 
soon after have changed his song, for siding 
with Parliament in the troubles that arose in 
the next reign, he was taken by the king's 
party, and sentenced to be hanged. From 
this danger he was rescued on the intercession 
of Waller, who pleaded for him, it is said, "in 
order that there might be one worse poet 
living than himself." The Spaniards, consonant 
to this proverb, say, " Cobra buena fama, y 
echate a dormir," get a good name, and go to 
sleep; and the French, " Qui a bruit cle se 
lever matin, peut dormir jusques a diner." 
Not alien, in its sense also is, "Give a dog an 
ill name, and hang him^" " Famas laboranti 
non facile succurritur," it is not easy to re- 
cover a lost character. 

A It era 

( 177 ) 

Altera Manufert Lapidem, altera Panem 


Holding in one hand a stone, in the other 
bread, from the custom of enticing dogs, whom 
we mean to beat, by holding out to them a 
piece of bread ; or a horse, when we want to 
harness him, by shewing him corn. The an- 
cients, by this apothegm, typified persons of 
deceitful and treacherous dispositions, 

" Tel par devant fait bon visage, 
Qui derriere mord et outrage," 

who speak fair, but mean foul ; whose words 
are honey, but their actions gall ; who wound 
while they flatter ; who gain your confidence 
to betray you. " AlterA manu scabunt, altera 
feriunt," who strike with one hand, while they 
tickle with the other ; " who cover with their 
wings, while they bite with their beaks." 

Ex eodem Ore calidum etfrigidum efflare. 

" Blowing hot and cold with the same 
breath." This those persons are said to do, 
who praise what they had before condemned, 
or condemn what they had once commended, 

N according 

( 178 ) 

according as it suits their purpose. The 
adage is founded on the well known apologue 
of a Satyr, who received a poor man, nearly 
frozen to death, into his hut. Observing the 
man to blow or breathe into his hands, the 
Satyr asked him, for what purpose he did 
that ? " To warm them," the poor man said. 
Seeing him afterwards blow into a bason of 
pottage he had given him, he asked him, 
"And for what purpose do you blow into your 
pottage?" and the man telling him that it was 
" To cool it," the Satyr turned him out of 
doors, declaring he would have no commu- 
nication with one, who could blow hot and 
cold with the same breath. 

Unico Digitulo scalpit Caput. 

Scratching the head with a single finger, 
which it seems was done by the fops in Greece 
and Rome, that they might not discompose 
the economy of their hair. The phrase was 
therefore applied to men of nice and effeminate 
manners, and implied that they paid more 
attention to their dress than to the acquire- 

ment of more valuable endowments. This 
pro verb, which originated among the Grecians, 
as did indeed nearly the whole of the collec- 
tion made by Erasmus, could only be used by 
the Romans after they had conquered that 
country, and had begun to adopt their man- 
ners, in which they became such proficients, 
as in time to outstrip their teachers in volup- 
tuousness and vice, as far as they had before 
excelled them in magnanimity and courage. 

Lentiscum mandere. 

Chewing mastic. The juice, or gum of the 
mastic tree, was early used as a dentrifice, 
being found to make the teeth white, and to 
strengthen and preserve the gums. Tooth- 
picks were also made of the wood, which those 
who were more than ordinarily attentive to 
their mouths, used frequently to chew, which 
subjected them to the censure implied in this 
and in the preceding adage, of being too nice 
and delicate in their persons. Those who 
could not get mastic toothpicks, made use 

x 2 ef 

( 180 ) 

of quills, as appears from the following by 

" Lentiscum melius, sed si tibi frondea cuspis 
Defuerit, denies penna levare potest." 

CCECUS Cceco Dux. 

The blind leading the blind. Men incapable 
of managing their own affairs, pretending to 
conduct those of others, or young men ad- 
vising with others equally inexperienced as 
themselves, instead of following the counsel 
of their elders, are like blind men trusting to 
the guidance of the blind. "But if the blind 
lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch." 
" Rehoboam lost his kingdom," Lord Verulam 
observes, " not from refusing counsel, but 
from taking counsel from young and incon- 
siderate men. Young men," he goes on to 
say, " in the conduct of affairs, embrace more 
than they can hold, stir more than they can 
quiet; fly to the end, without considering the 
means. They use extreme remedies at first,' 
and, which doubleth all errors, they will not 


acknowledge or retract them ; like an un- 
steady horse, that will neither stop nor turn." 

Sine Cortice nature. 

To swim without bladders, cork, or any of 
the aids usually given to learners. The pro- 
verb may be applied to persons who have 
made such progress in the knowledge of any 
art, that they are no longer in want of masters. 

"Sitnul ac duraverit Eetas 

Membra animumque tuum, nabis sine cortice," 

when time shall have strengthened your body, 
and the powers of your mind, you may swim 
without corks, that is, you will no longer stand 
in need of a monitor to advise and instruct you. 

Ut possumus, quando ut volumus non licet, or 
" Non uti libet, sed uti licet, sic vivimus" 

We should learn to live as we can, since we 
cannot live as we would. " We should make a 
virtue of necessity," and be contented though 
we should not be able to attain what our am- 
bition or cupidity grasps at. So unbounded are 
the desires of men, that even those who have 
N 3 abundance, 

abundance, rarely or never think they have 
enough. Happiness does not consist so much 
in the largeness of our possessions, as in our 
moderating our desires, and using properly 
what we have. 

" Haec perinde sunt, ut illius animus, qui ea possidet, 
Qui uti scit, ei bona, illi qui non utitur recte, mala." 

The real wants of nature are few, and ordina- 
rily attainable by such a portion of industry, 
as we are most, if not all of us, capable of 
exerting, provided we are careful to dispense 
frugally what we get by our industry or in* 

" Man wants but little here below, 
Nor wants that little long." 

u De hambre," the Spaniards say, "a nadie vi 
morir, de mucho comer a cien mil," I never 
saw a man die of hunger, but thousands die of 
over feeding. The follo\ving from St. Austin's 
Confessions, as rendered by Burton, is so much 
to the purpose of the present argument, that 
I am induced to insert it. 

"Passing by a village in the territory of 
Milan," the writer says, " I saw a poor beggar 
that had got, belike, his belly full of meat, 


( 183 ) 

jesting and merry. I sighed, and said to some 
of my friends that were then with me, what a 
deal of trouble, madness, pain, and grief, do we 
sustain, and exaggerate unto ourselves, to get 
that secure happiness, which this poor beggar 
hath prevented us. of, and which we perad ven- 
ture shall never have ! for that which he hath 
now attained with the begging of some small 
pieces of silver, a temporal happiness, and pre- 
sent heart's ease, I cannot compass with all 
my careful windings, and running in and out. 
And surely the beggar was very merry, but I 
was heavy : he was secure, but I timorous. 
And if any man should ask me now, whether 


I had rather be merry, or still so solicitous and 
sad, I should say, merry. If he should ask 
me again, whether I had rather be as I am, or 
as this beggar was, I should sure choose to be 
as 1 am, tortured still with cares and fears, but 
out of peevishness, and not out of truth." As 
St. Austin was a bishop, wealthy and in great 
authority, we learn from this simple story, of 
how little avail wealth and power are in pro- 
curing to us happiness. The proverb may be 
used by any one not meeting with the success 
N 4 he 

( 184 ) 

he expected from his exertions, signifying 
that he should still receive gratefully and con- 
tentedly what had fallen to his lot. 

Ut Sementem feceris, it a et metis. 

As you have sown so you must expect to 
reap. " Quien mala cama haze, en ella se 
yaze," " Comme on fait son lit, on se couche," 
" as you have made your bed, so you must 
lie:" you must not expect corn from thistles, 
or health and prosperity from intemperance 
and prodigality. " No hay dulzura sin sudor," 
" there is no sweet without sweat," and " No 
hay ganancia, sin fatiga," " no gains without 
pains ;" " he that will not work, must not ex- 
pect to eat ; " qui est oisif en sa jeunesse, 
travaillera en sa vieillesse," it is only from 
being industrious and frugal when young, that 
we may hope for comfort and plenty in our 
old age. 

" Quin ubi qua? non decent, 
Haud veritus es patrare, fer quae non libeat." 

As you were not afraid to do what was un- 
fitting, bear now what is unplcasing as the 


( 185 ) 

consequence of your misdoing. Zeno having 
detected his servant in thieving, ordered him 
to be whipped ; the servant, in excuse for 
what he had done, said it was decreed by the 
fates that he should be a thief, alluding to the 
doctrine which he had heard his master main- 
taining ; and so it was, said Zeno, that you 
should be whipped. That our actions are in 
some degree governed by fate is a very early 
dogma, and is not entirely abandoned, 

" And when weak women go astray, 
Their stars are more in fault than they." 

The Duke de Rochefoucault seems to have 
acknowledged the principle : " II semble que 
nos actions aient des e"toiles heureuses on mal- 
heureuses, a qui elles doivent une grande par- 
tie de la louange et du blame qu'on leur 
donne :" our actions seem often to be under 
the influence of good or bad stars, to which 
rather than to our prudence or misconduct, 
the principal part of the praise or blame they 
may merit, should be attributed. 

" Committunt multi eadem diverse crimina fato, 
Ille crucem sceleris pretium tulerit, hie diadema." 

How different the fates or fortunes of men! 


( 186 ) 

the same act of villany that brings one man 
to the gallows, raises another to a throne. 
This is consonant also to an old English pro- 
verb, " one man may steal a horse, more safely 
than another may look at him over a hedge ;" 
also, "one man's meat is another man's poison." 

Deorum Cibus est, 

Meat fit for the Gods, who, according to 
Homer, feasted only on nectar and ambrosia, 
which were supposed to be of such tenuity as 
to pass off by transpiration, diffusing around 
them rich perfumes : as digestion was per- 
formed without labour to the stomach, the 
bodies of the gods were supposed never to be- 
come old or to be subjected to decay. The 
phrase is applied hyperbolically, to any very 
rich and superb entertainment ; it is a feast 
fit for the gods. 

Multis Ictibus dejlcitur Quercus. 

There is nothing so difficult, but it may be 
effected by perseverance; even the massive and 


( 187 ) 

sturdy oak by repeated strokes of the axe is at 
length thrown down. " Gutta cavat lapi- 
dem," and the constant dripping of water 
wears and hollows the solid stone : " el que 
trabaja, y madra, hila ora," he that labours 
and perseveres, spins gold : " le labeur sur- 
monte tout," by labour and perseverance, all 
difficulties are surmounted. 

Tertius Cato. 

He is a third, or another Cato, was Said 
ironically of persons affecting a more than or- 
dinary degree of gravity, and sanctity of man- 
ners. The two Catos, who were in their time 
models of wisdom, virtue and patriotism, were 
in such high esteem among the Romans, that 
they even believed that they had been sent 
into the world by the gods, for the purpose of 
suppressing vice and banishing it from the 
earth. To compare any one therefore to 
them, or to call him a third Cato, would have 
been the highest compliment that could have 
been paid to any human being, but as they 


( 188 ) 

despaired of seeing ag^n such a character, 
the phrase was never used but to ridicule such 
persons as endeavoured to assume the appear- 
ance without any just pretensions to the ac- 
complishments of those great men. Of such 
persons, we usually say, " he is a second 
Solomon ;" and the jew in the Merchant of 
Venice, " he is a second Daniel." 

Sapientum octavus. 

An eighth wise man. This was applied iro- 
nically to persons who were severe censors of 
the morals of others, but not very attentive to 
propriety in their own conduct. The ancients 
seem to have selected seven of the philoso- 
phers, who were believed to excel the rest in 
wisdom and virtue, and called them the 
" seven wise men," and were as little disposed 
to add to the number, as to admit there could 
be a third Cato. It is not with certainty 
agreed by any of the writers whose works 
have come down to us, who the seven wise 
men were. 


( 189 ) 

Vtl C&co appareat. 

Even a blind man might perceive it, may 
be said metaphorically, of a proposition so 
clear and perspicuous, that it might be com- 
prehended by the weakest intellects. Even a 
child may understand it. 

Ex Quercubus ac Saxis nati. 

This was used figuratively to designate per- 
sons of harsh and cruel dispositions, who 
could by no intreaties be moved to compas- 
sion ; they could not be the progeny of men, 
but must have been produced by trees or 
rocks, or some such unfeeling bodies. Pope 
makes one of his shepherds say, 

" I know thee, Love, on foreign mountains bred, 
Wolves gave thee suck, and savage tigers fed ; 
Thou wert from ^Etna's burning entrails torn, 
Got by fierce whirlwinds, and in thunder born." 

Virum improbum vel Mm mordeat. 

Even a mouse may strike terror into the 
mind of a man who has been guilty of any 


great crime; conscious of his iniquity, he 
hears a pursuer in every the lightest noise, for, 
*' a guilty conscience needs no accuser ;" this, 
at the least, is the case with persons only com- 
mencing their career of sin, for veterans in 
iniquity are not, perhaps, so easily affrighted. 

" Pavore carent qui nihil commiserunt ; at poenam 
Semper ob oculos versari putant qui peccarunt." 

The innocent are free from fear ; but the 
guilty live under the perpetual apprehension 
that their crimes will be discovered, and that 
the punishment they have merited will over- 
take them. " Vivir bien destierra miedo," 
to live well banishes fear. 

Bis dat qui cito dat. 

" Quien da presto, da dos veces," " he 
gives twice who gives in a trice;" and " dono 
molto aspettato, e venduto non donato," a 
gift long expected or waited for, is not given 
but sold : benefits are not so much esteemed 
for their value, as for the readiness with which 
they are bestowed. " Say not to your neigh- 
bour, go and come again, and to-morrow I will 


give, when tbou hast it by thee :" the assist- 
ance which is not given early is frequently 
unavailable : I thank you, what you now 
offer might have been useful ; but the time is 
past, the mischief your present might have 
prevented, is fallen upon me. <l Ingratum 
est beneficium quod diu inter manus dan- 
tis haesit," the kindness that is long delay- 
ed loses its value; " at bis gratum est, quod 
ultro offertur," but the favour which comes 
unsolicited, is doubly grateful. " Hope de- 
ferred niaketh the heart sick :" the petitioner 
has paid by anxious expectation more than 
the value of the gift ; or he has learned, 
while waiting for assistance, how to bear his 
trouble, and has accommodated himself to his 
situation. " Quo mihi fortunas, si non con- 
ceditur uti ?" Of what use is fortune,, when I 
am no longer in a capacity of enjoying it ? 
" Is not a patron," Dr. Johnson says to the 
Earl of Chesterfield, " one who looks with un- 
concern on a man struggling for life in the 
water, and when he has reached the land, en- 
cumbers him with help? The notice which you 
have been pleased to take of my labours, had 


( 192 ) 

been kind; but it has been delayed until I 
am indifferent, and cannot enjoy it; till I am 
solitary and cannot impart it; till I am 
known and do not want it." 

" How little knowest thou who hast not tried, 
What hell it is, in suing long to bide, 
To waste long days that may be better spent, 
To pass long nights in cheerless discontent; 
To speed to-day, to be put back to-morrow, 
To live on hope, to die with pain and sorrow." 

CaudcE Pilos equince paullatim oportet evellere. 

Allow me to do that slowly and gradually, 
which cannot be effected suddenly and with 
violence. " Piuma a piuma se pela 1'occha," 
feather by feather the goose \vas stripped ; 
" Petit a petit Toiseau fait son nid," and by 
little and little the bird makes its nest. 

" Si leonina pellis non satis est, vulpina addenda ;" 
" The lion's skin, too short, you know, 
Was lengthened by the fox's tail/' 

The adage took its rise from a story told by 
Plutarch of Sertorius a Roman general, who 
finding his soldiers were not pleased with his 
wary and cautious mode of conducting a war 


(193 ) 

in which he was engaged, he ordered two of 
his men, the one young, lusty and strong, the 
other, old and feeble, to strip the tails of two 
horses, that were brought to them, of their 
hair; the young man, grasping the whole of 
the tail in his hand, pulled it with all his 
strength, and continued his exertions until 
he had completely tired himself, without ef- 
fecting the business : the old and feeble man 
on the contrary, by plucking a few hairs only 
at a time, very soon stripped the tail bare and 
so accomplished his purpose, with but little 
difficulty. Then Sertorius, addressing himself 
to his soldiers said, " videtis, commilitones, 
quanto plus posset ingenium quam vires," 
you see, my fellow soldiers, of how much more 
value deliberation is than strength. 

Sonus Dux bomim reddit Comitem. 

A good general makes a good soldier, a 
good master good servants, a good father 
good children, a good magistrate good citi- 
zens, not only because each in their station, 
will take care that those under their authority 
o shall 

( 194 ) 

shall be instructed in every thing that is ne- 
cessary to enable them properly to perform 
their several duties, but they will themselves 
be careful that they set only good examples, 
which they know to be more efficacious and 
more likely to induce good manners than sim- 
ple instruction ; for " precepta ducunt, at ex- 
empla trahunt;" 

" Example draws where precept fails, 
And sermons are less read than tales." 

This regimen, however, will not always produce 
the desired effect. For though the parent and 
the master shall have diligently performed 
their parts, there are too many opportunities 
and too manv incentives to vice to be found 


abroad, to hope that the pupil will entirely 
escape infection. Hence it not unfrequently 
happens, that the most prudent and worthy 
parents have to lament the delinquency of 
their children, though the greatest care had 
been taken to instil and ingraft into them 
when young, the principles of honour and in- 
tegrity ; for " many a good cow hath a bad 
ealf," and " a good Jack, does not always 


( 195 ) 

make a good Jill." The sentiment therefore 
contained in the following lines, 

" Youth, like the softened wax, with ease will take 
Those images which first impressions make ; 
If those be fair, their lives will all be bright; 
If foul, they '11 cloud them o'er with shades of night.'' 

though frequently, is not universally true. 
jElius Spartianus, in the life of the Emperor 
Severus, shews by many examples, that men 
famed for learning, virtue, or valour, have, for 
the most part, either left behind them no chil- 
dren, or such as it had been more for their 
honour and the interest of human affairs, that 
they had died childless. To the instances 
produced by this writer, Mr. Ray adds from 
our own history, " that Edward the First, a 
wise and valiant prince, left us Edward the 
Second ; Edward the Black Prince, Richard 
the Second; and Henry the Fifth, a valiant 
and successful king, Henry the Sixth." 

Litem parit Lis, Noxa item Noxam parit* 

One dispute, or one injury produces ano- 
o 2 ther. 

( '96 ) 

ther. Where the parties are of litigious dis- 
positions, and will neither of them give way, 
it happens not unfrequently, that from the 
most trifling causes, the most serious con- 
tentions arise, terminating in a duel, or in a 
suit at law, often more disastrous than a duel. 
" Nescios, y porfiados, hacen ricos los lat- 
rados," fools, and contentious persons, th6 
Spaniards say, make the lawyers rich ; they 
also say, " Mas vale mala avanencia, que 
buena sentencia;" and the Italians, " Meglio 
e magro accordo, che grassa sentenza," " A 
lean agreement is better than a fat sentence;" 
to which we have added, not less sensibly 
and impressively, " Agree, for the law is 

Nothing is more generally known, or more 
commonly deprecated, than the misery often 
occasioned by contention, and yet how very 
little influence does this knowledge seem to 
have on our conduct ! There are few of us 
but can tell stories of families reduced to in- 
digence from having too hastily engaged in a 
suit at law, in defending a doubtful right to 
a slip of land, or other equally insignificant 


( 197 ) 

object, claimed perhaps by some wealthy 
neighbour. " Should I suffer myself to be 
imposed upon ?" Better suffer a small impo- 
sition, than a great injury. No one can tell 
on entering into a lawsuit, how or where it 
will terminate ; but of one thing we are very 
certain, the expense, unless the object be very 
considerable, will exceed the sum for which 
we are contending, for " Law is a bottomless 
pit," an insatiable gulph, and it should be our 
care to keep out of its reach. The only dif- 
ference made by the painter between two men, 
one of whom had gained, and the other lost 
his cause, was, that to the unsuccessful party 
he gave a ragged coat, and a gloomy despond- 
ing countenance : to him who had succeeded 
he gave an equally ragged coat, but expressed 
in his look a savage joy, not at the profit he 
had made, for his apparel shewed the low 
state of his finances, but that he had been able 
to effect the ruin of his opponent. " Be not 
easily provoked," Lord Burleigh admonishes 
his son, " to enter into a suit at law, lest in 
the end it prove no greater refuge than did 
the thicket of brambles to a flock of sheep, 
o 3 that, 

( 198 ) 

that, driven from the plain by a tempest, ran 
thither for shelter, and there lost their fleeces." 

Parturiunt Monies, nascetur ridiculus Mus. 

" The mountain laboured and brought forth 
a mouse." " La montagne est accouch6e 
d'une souris." This may be applied to persons 
introducing a story with great pomp and 
solemnity, which turns out to be trifling and 
insignificant ; to vain and empty boasters, 
who have neither the power, nor perhaps the 
inclination to do what they are very free in 
promising; or when any project, of which 
great hopes were formed, proves abortive. 

Thesaurus Carbones erant. 

Searching for a treasure, they found only 
charcoal, may be said of persons who are dis-. 
appointed in their expectations, who, after 
great labour and expense, find the object of 
their search of little value; the end of nume- 
rous expensive speculations. Charcoal being 


of a nature to last for ages when buried under 
ground, was used by the ancients to mark the 
boundaries of lands. A trench being dug, 
dividing the property of two individuals, it 
was rilled with charcoal, and then covered 
with soil, in which stakes, at regulated dis- 
tances, were placed. The stakes might be 
removed, but the charcoal remaining, would 
for ever shew the original boundaries of the 

Dives aut miquus est, aut iniqui Hceres. 

A rich man is either a knave or heir to a 
knave. " How can you be a good man," 
Sylla was asked, " possessing such immense 
wealth, though you received nothing from 
your parents?" Consonant to this opinion is 
the English adage, " Happy is the man whose 
father went to the devil;" and 

" Jt is a saying common more than civil, 
The son is blest, whose sire is at the devil." 

Large fortunes made in a small space of 
time, are rarely found to be acquired by fair 
and honourable practices ; as is expressed in 

o 4 a pas- 

( 200 ) 

a passage in one of the comedies of Menander, 
" Nunquam vir aequus dives evasit cito.' r 
" Seek not," Lord Verulam says, " great 
riches, but such as thou mayest get justly, use 
soberly, distribute cheerfully, and leave con- 
tentedly." Solomon advises, " to beware of 
hasty gathering of riches." Riches obtained 
by the ordinary means of industry, increase 
slowly, and it is only by bold and hazardous 
speculations, that they are made to accumu- 
late rapidly. The most honourable merchants, 
or those so esteemed, who acquire very large 
fortunes, can hardly be said to obtain them 
justly. For though they, none of them, con- 
fine their traffic within their own capitals, yet 
if they are successful, they receive the whole 
of the profit ; but if their speculations prove 
unfortunate, they involve in their fall all who 
were unlucky enough to give them credit. 
" The first article, that a young trader offers 
for sale," our proverb says, " is his hipnesty." 

Hie Funis nihil attraxlt. 

This bate has taken no fish. This argument 


( 201 ) 

has not prevailed, or this scheme has not an- 
swered ; some other mode must be tried, which 
may be more successful. " Semper tibi pen- 
deat hamus," have your hook always bated ; 
though you should fail again and again, con- 
tinue your exertions, you will succeed at 
length. " Quis enim totum diem jaculans, 
non aliquando conlineat?"forwhosoevershoots 
often will at length hit the mark. To the same 
purport is, " Omnem movere lapidern," " leave 
no stone unturned," try every expedient that 
is likely to be successful. 

Merx ultronea putet. 

" Profferred service stinks." We are apt to 
esteem of little value, what is obtained with 
small labour. The proverb seems to have 
taken its origin from the mistrust entertained 
of any goods pressed upon us with too much 
earnestness by the venders ; from that cir- 
cumstance, concluding them to be damaged 
or faulty. 

" Laudat venales qui vult extrudere merces," 

every man praising the articles he wishes to 



dispose of; the purchaser, on the other hand, 
labours as hard to depreciate what he is about 
to buy. " It is naught, it is naught, says 
the buyer, but when he is gone he vaunteth." 
" Chi comprar ha bisogno di cent' ochii, chi 
vende n' ha assai de uno," he who buys hath 
need of an hundred eyes, who sells hath 
enough of one. We are all of us also solicitous 
of obtaining intelligence that is attempted to 
be kept secret, or which is known to a few 
persons only, and listen to it with more atten- 
tion than to information equally important, 
but of more easy acquisition. 

Fuimiis Troes, and " Aquifye Troy a." 

Troy once was, that is, Troy, though now 
destroyed, was once a great and powerful city. 
It may be used by persons whose families, or 
countries, formerly in repute, have fallen to 
decay. Time was when we were of some note 
or value. " Fui Caius," is the inscription that 
Dr. Caius, or Keys, the founder of a college 
of that name at Cambridge, ordered to be in- 
scribed on his monument. 


( 203 ) 

Post Festum venisti. 

" You are come a day after the fair," the 
business is done, there is now no want of your 
assistance, may be said to tardy and indolent 
persons, who are always too late, whether en- 
gaged in business or pleasure. To which how- 
ever they may answer, " II vaut mieux tard 
que jamais," " Better late than never," and 
" Better come at the end of a feast, than at 
the beginning of a fray." 

Illotls Pedibus ingredi. 

Entering with unwashed feet. Alluding to 
the custom of washing the feet, anciently 
practised by all persons, before the}^ entered 
any sacred place, or sat down to their repasts. 
It was used to be applied to persons talking 
confidently on subjects they did not under- 
stand, or irreverently on sacred subjects; or 
to those who intruded themselves into busi- 
ness, without having previously prepared 
themselves by study and application. As the 
ancients wore sandals, and no stockings, their 


( 204 ) 

feet and legs were exposed to the mud and 
dirt, and required to be washed, when they 
had walked any considerable distance, both 
for the sake of cleanliness and refreshment. 
After washing they were usually anointed with 
sweet-scented oil. This custom, at first adopted 
from necessity, became at length a religious 

Palinodiam canere. 

This was used to be said to persons, who 
had been obliged, to use a phrase common in 
this country, " to eat their words," to retract 
the judgment or opinion they had given on 
any person or subject ; to praise what they 
had before condemned, or to censure what 
they had commended. The allegorical punish- 
ment of the Braggadochio, in all the old play- 
writers, is to be forced to " eat their swords." 

The following fable is related, as having 
given origin to this adage. The poet Stesi- 
chorus, having in a copy of verses severely 
censured the conduct of Helena, as a punish- 
ment for his offence, he was deprived of his 


( 205 ) 

sight by the gods her protectors. Under- 
standing the cause of his disaster, in a sub- 
sequent poem, he raised and extolled her 
character, as highly as he had before censured 
her. Having therefore sung his palinodia, 
retracted his censure, which is implied by the 
term, he was restored to his sight. 


Living like an old eagle. Syrus meeting 
Chremes early in the morning, whom he knew 
to have drunk hard the night before, addressed 
him with this phrase, intimating that drinking 
suited him as it did an old eagle. The eagle, 
Pliny says, is in the latter part of its life in- 
capable of eating any solid food, the upper 
mandible growing to such a length, and be- 
coming so hooked, that it can only open its 
mouth sufficiently to suck the blood of the 
animals it takes. Old topers therefore who 
usually eat but little, may be said like that 
bird, if the story is correct, to live on suction. 
The adage may be applied, and with more 
propriety, perhaps, to persons enjoying a high 


( 206 ) 

state of health, spirits, and activity to an ex- 
treme old age, which the eagle, upon better 
grounds, is known to do. 

Matura Satio sape decipit, sera semper mala est. 

Corn early sown may disappoint your ex- 
pectation, but sown too late, you will certainly 
lose your seed and your labour. A proper 
and seasonable time is to be chosen for per- 
forming all business ; if it be too precipitately 
undertaken, and before you have made the 
necessary preparation, it will rarely succeed ; 
but if it be delayed too long, and the oppor- 
tunity suffered to pass by, that can never be 
.recovered, and the business will altogether 
fail. The proverb probably took its rise from 
the following passage in Cato's treatise De Re 
Rustica : " Res rustica sic est, si unam rem sero 
feceris, omnia opera sero facies," such is the 
nature of husbandry that if one process be 
performed too late, the whole of the business 
will fail. 


( 207 ) 

Elephantus non capit Murem, nee Aquila 

The elephant disdains to contend with a 
mouse, neither will the eagle stoop to catch a 
fly. The brave man is not easily provoked to 
punish a coward, and men of enlarged and 
liberal minds are above noticing the paltry 
censures of trifling, and insignificant scribblers. 

De Pilo pendet. De Filo pendet. 

" Colgar cle un hilo," it hangs by a hair, by 
a thread, as the life of a man does, who is at 
sea in a violent storm ; it may be said in all 
cases of great and imminent danger, also when 
the result of any business depends on some 
minute circumstance. The adage is said to 
have taken its rise from a device of Dionysius, 
tyrant of Syracuse, who ordered one of his 
courtiers, who had too highly extolled the 
pleasures of royalty, to be placed at a splendid 
banquet, attended by numerous servants, all 
ready to obey his orders, and surrounded with 
.every thing that might serve to exhilarate his 

spirits : 

( 208 ) 

spirits: but over his head, suspended by a single 
hair, was a massive sword, which threatened 
every moment to fall upon, and kill him. The 
thought of the danger in which he was placed, 
took from him all relish for the dainties before 
him, and made him request that he might be 
allowed to descend to his former state of pri- 
vacy and safety. The tyrant, by this con- 
trivance, meant to shew, that if royalty has its 
pleasures, it is also surrounded with dangers, 
that may well be thought to balance its en- 
joyments. " If thou knewest," he said, " with 
what cares and anxieties this robe is stuffed, 
thou wouldest not stoop to take it from the 
ground." " None think the great unhappy, 
but the great." 

Elephantem ex Muscdfads. 

Persons speaking hyperbolically, and mag- 
nifying small and insignificant objects, or 
treating little offences as great and serious 
crimes, may be said to make elephants of flies, 
" mountains of mole-hills." 


( 209 ) 
In Laqueos Lupus. 

The wolf is fallen into a snare, was said, 
When a crafty and bad man, who had been a 
plague to his neighbours, was visited by any 
great misfortune, or suffered a considerable 
loss, particularly if this happened when he 
was contriving mischief for some other person. 
" Craft," we say, " bringeth nothing home," 
that is, nothing that is permanent. 

Annosa Vulpes hdud capitur Laqueo. 

" Old birds are not to be caught with 
chaff." An old fox is not easily taken ; or 
with the French, " Un renard n'est pas pris 
deux fois a un piege," he is not to be twice 
taken in the same snare ; but " Enfin les re- 
nards se troiivent chez le pelletier," at length 
they come to the furrier, " Tutte le volpe si 
trovano in pelliceria." The tricks of crafty 
and bad men are not easily detected, but 
though such may escape for a time, they are 
usually caught at last. " Mucho sabe la zorra, 
pero mas el que la toma," the fox is cunning, 
but he is more cunning who takes him. 

p C apt antes 

( 210 ) 
Captantes capti sumus. 

"The biter is bit." Attempting to lead 
another into an error, I am fallen into one 
myself, from which I am not likely easily to 
escape. Assaying to mortify another, by plac- 
ing him in a ridiculous light before his com- 
panions, he has turned the jest upon me, and 
covered me with confusion. Augustus Csesar, 
seeing a young man from the country, who 
in his features very much resembled his own 
family, asked him, by way of scoff, whether 
his mother had ever been at Rome? No, said 
the youth, but my father has. Princes endea- 
vouring to enlarge their dominions at the ex- 
pense of their neighbours, are themselves not 
unfrequently obliged to yield up a part, or 
perhaps the whole of what they before pos- 
sessed. "He hath graven and digged a pit, 
and is fallen into it himself." 

JEthiopcm ex Vultujudico. 

The ^Ethiopian may be known by his coun- 
tenance, being too distinctly marked to be 


( 211 ) 

mistaken even on the slightest view of him ; 
but neither persons, nor things, are in general 
to be judged of by a superficial view of them, 
for, " all is not gold that glitters." Men are 
not to be estimated to be friends, merely for 
professing themselves to be so. " Del dicho 
al hecho ay gran trecho," there is a great 
difference between saying and doing, and, 
" Tierra negra buen pan lleva," black earth 
produces white bread ; we therefore say, 

De Fructu Arborem cognosce. 

A tree is known by its fruit, and the real 
value of a man by his actions. 

Satius e$t recurrere, quam currere mall. 

It is often better to return, than to go on ; 
that is, when any one finds he has taken a 
wrong road, it is better to turn back than to 
proceed, as the further he goes on, the further 
he will be from the place he proposes visiting. 
This is the plain and literal sense of the adage ; 
but it is used to recommend to us to leave 
any scheme or project in which we may have 
P2 en* 

engaged, if we find it not likely to answer the 
intended purpose, and not through pride, and 
an unwillingness to acknowledge we have been 
in an error, to persist until we have suffered 
some great inconvenience, or mischief. 

In Man Aquam gutzris, or 
" Insanus, medio Flumine quceris Aquam" 

Do you hunt for water, though surrounded 
by the ocean ; why particularise one fault in 
a man, the occurrences of whose life, offer 
only a continued series of vice and immorality; 
or censure a single error in a work, in which 
they so abound, that they are to be met with 
in every page ? 

Ut Canis e Nilo. 

As dogs drink of the river Nile. Menwhoarfe 
unsteady in business, attending to it by starts 
and snatches, and then leaving it for other em- 
ployments, or reading books in the same de- 
sultory and careless manner, are said to take 


( 213 ) 

to them, as dogs take water from the Nile, 
that is, hastily, and without stopping to taste 
it. This the dogs are said to do through fear 
of the crocodiles, which abound in the upper 
part or' that river. A person inquiring, after 
the defeat of the forces of Marc Anthony at 
Actium, what he had done there, was an- 
swered by his friend, "Ut canis in ^Egypto, 
bibit et fugit," that is, as the dogs do in 
Egypt, drink and run. Marc Anthony is 
said on that day only to have shewn himself, 
and seeing the superiority of the forces of his 
adversary, to have fled, without waiting the 

Fluvius cum Mari certas. 

Being but a river, do you compare yourself 
to the ocean ? A frog trying to extend herself 
to the size of an ox, burst, we are told, and 
became an object of derision to the spectators. 
Men of slender fortunes, emulating the state 
and splendor of the wealthy, are ruined, and 
are despised even by those who encouraged 
them in their expenses. 

P 3 <* Qui 

( 214 ) 

" Qui monte plus haul qu'il ne doit, 
Descend plus has qu'il ne voudroit." 

Those who attempt rising higher than they 
ought, generally mar their fortunes, and fall 
lower than they would have done, had they 
been less ambitious. 

Leonem ex Unguibus estimare. Ex Pede 

Prom the size of the talons, you may esti- 
mate the bulk of an animal, and from the 
foot, the stature of the man to whom it be- 
longed. Also, from a single stratagem, the 
wit and ingenuity, and from a letter, or con- 
versation, the learning, or judgment of any 
one with whom we are about to be connected 
may often be discovered. The rule, how- 
ever, is not infallible, for bulk does not always 
indicate strength or courage; neither are the 
qualities of the mind ordinarily laid open at a 
single interview. Hence we say, "Fronti nulla 
fides," mens' characters are not always written 
on their foreheads, and " No es todb oro, lo 
que reluce," all is not gold that glitters ; and 

" straight 

" straight personages have often crooked 
manners ; fair faces, foul vices ; and good 
complexions, ill conditions." 

It is known, Plutarch says, that the Olympic 
stadium was of the length of six hundred feet, 
measured by the foot of Hercules; but Pytha- 
goras, finding that the stadium used in other 
countries, containing the same number of feet 
of men of the ordinary stature, was much 
shorter, by dividing the space in which it was 
deficient into six hundred parts, he determined 
the exact length of the foot of Hercules, and 
thence of his stature or height, which he found 
to be six feet seven inches ; and Phidias the 
statuary, from seeing the claw of a lion, 
ascertained the size of the animal, whence the 

Extremis Digitis attingere. 
This may be said by a writer or orator, who 
does not mean to enter deeply into the subject 
he is discoursing of, but only to handle it 
lightly, not to grasp or take hold of the ob- 
ject, but to touch it with the ends of his 
fingers. "Summis labiis," persons professing 
p 4 with 

with their lips, more than they intend, has 
nearly a similar meaning ; and 

Summit Naribus olfacere, 

passing an opinion upon a subject from a 
very slight inspection or examination of it. 
" Molli brachio, et laevi brachio," are also 
phrases used to intimate that a business has 
been hurried over, without having the ne- 
cessary attention paid to it. In handicraft 
business we should say, "bestow a little more 
elbow-grease upon it," 

De Fcece haurire. 

To drain the cask, and drink to the bottom; 
metaphorically, to be reduced to the lowest 
state of misery and wretchedness. 

With persevering industry. Like to school- 
masters, who are obliged to repeat the same 
lesson to an hundred different boys, and many 
times to the same boys, that it may be re- 
tained in their memories. There are few things 


( 217 ) 

impossible to industry. Iron, by repeated 
strokes of the hammer, becomes at length soft 
and pliable, whence the adage. 

In Quadrum re dig ere. 
To make any thing perfectly square; meta- 
phorically, to reduce to order. Thus the parts 
of any object, or of any speech or composition, 
agreeing together, they are said to quadrate ; 
and the man whose conduct is consistent and 
right, is said " to act upon the square." The 
phrase seems to be derived from the uniform 
and apposite consistency of that figure, whose 
every side and angle is answered by its op- 

Dimidium plus toto. 

The half is oftentimes more, or better than 
the whole ; that is, the half that we possess, 
or that may be acquired with safety, is better 
than the whole, if it cannot be obtained with- 
out danger. By this enigmatical adage, in 
frequent use among the ancients, is recom- 
mended the " aurea mediocritas," the golden 

mean : 

( 218 ) 

mean ; or, moderation in our pursuits of riches 
or of power. It is better to be contented with 
a middling estate, or to cease speculating when 
we have acquired a competency, than by hunt- 
ing after more, to hazard what we already 
possess. The dog catching at the shadow of 
a piece of meat which he saw in the water, lost 
that which he held in his mouth. The adage 
may also be applied to persons engaged in 
controversy, where neither party will give way 
though a small concession on each side might 
tend to their mutual profit. Erasmus applies 
it to the dissensions existing between the Lu- 
therans and the Romanists, which then raged 
with great violence, neither party being dis- 
posed to recede in their pretensions, or both of 
them, perhaps, making it a point of conscience 
not to yield. " Dum enim theologi quidam, 
ac prsesules, nihil omnino volunt de suis dog- 
matibus, ac jure concedere, veniunt in peri- 
culum ne perdant et ilia, qure bono jure tene- 
bant" For while the heads of the Romish 
church will yield nothing to the adverse party, 
there seems great reason to apprehend they 
will lose much of what they would be allowed 


( 219 ) 

to retain. My opinion,, he adds, is, that rather 
than hazard losing the whole of the authority 
they contend for, that they give up a portion 
of it, it being hetter to preserve the half, 
than by contending for the whole to lose all. 
From this, and other passages in his works, it 
seems clear that though Erasmus continued to 
his death in community with the catholics, he 
was much more inclined to the tenets of the 
Lutherans, and so indeed the Lutherans be- 
lieved, and they reproved him accordingly for 
his pusillanimity, in not declaring himself more 
openly. But he had not the courage, as he 
frankly acknowledged, to become a martyr. 
" Non omnes ad martyrium, satis habent ro- 
boris ; vereor autem, ne, si quid incident tu- 
multus, Petrum sim imitaturus." He was be- 
sides, as he says, so averse to contention, that 
he should abandon the truth itself, if it could 
only be defended by tumult. " Mihi adeo 
invisa est discard ia, ut veritas etiam displiceat 
seditiosa. " Hesiod, to whom we owe this 
adage, tells us, that having been, defrauded of 
a portion of his estate by his brother, he was 
thence induced to turn his mind more sedu- 

( 220 ) 

x r \ 

lously to the cultivation of what remained, 
which soon became so productive, that he 
observed, the judges, who decided the cause, 
had not done him so much injury as was ap- 
prehended, the half proving in the event to be 
more valuable than was the whole. 

" Unhappy they to whom God ha'nt revealed, 
By a strong light which must their sense controul, 
That half a great estate's more than the whole ; 
Unhappy, from whom concealed still does lye, 
Of roots and herbs, the wholesome luxury." 

Ole.o tranquillior. 

Attend to me, and I will cure you of your 
passions, and make you more soft, supple, and 
pliant than oil, "As mild as a turtle-dove." 
It is known, that oil poured into water, when 
in the highest state of agitation and disturb- 
ance, renders it immediately smooth and placid; 
hence persons of peaceable and quiet disposi- 
tions were said to be, "Oleo tranquilliores," as 
those of haughty, unsteady, and passionate 
tempers were, " Iracundiores Adria," more 
boisterous and turbulent than the Adriatic 


( 221 ) 

sea, which had the character, though not very 
justly, perhaps, of being peculiarly liable to 
storms and tempests. Pope seemed to think 
that his verses might have an effect on the 
mind similar to that of oil on water. 

" Know there are lines, which fresh and fresh applied* 
Might cure the arrantst puppy of his pride." 

Canis in Pr&sepi. 

Like the dog in the manger, who would not 
suffer the ox to eat of the hay, though he 
could make no use of it himself. Those who 
have large collections of valuable books, which 
they are incapable of reading, and refuse to 
let them be consulted by others who might 
reap information from them, are guilty of this 
vice, as indeed is every one, who will not im- 
part, out of his abundance, to those who are 
in want. 

Summum Jus summa Injuria. 

The extreme of justice, that is, strictly ad- 
hering to the letter of the law, may prove 
highly injurious. As it is impossible that laws 


( 222 ) 

should be so framed as to embrace and take 
in every species or degree of turpitude or 
crimes ; so on the other hand, it cannot be 
avoided, but that in the endeavour to restrain 
or punish vice, general regulations will be 
made prohibiting actions, which, under cer- 
tain circumstances, may not be criminal, or 
may be even necessary or unavoidable. Hence 
it has been found expedient in most civilised 
countries, to lodge a power in the supreme 
magistrate of pardoning persons, in whose 
cases some alleviating circumstances appear, 
who, by rigidly adhering to the 1 letter of the 
law, would suffer the punishment allotted to 
the act he had committed. Courts of equity are 
also formed, empowered to correct errors in 
the wording of deeds or instruments by which 
property is transferred, when it appears that 
by following the direct meaning of the words 
the intention of the parties would be defeated. 
By a law of the Romans, children refusing to 
support their aged parents were condemned 
to be thrown into prison ; " liberi parentes 
alant, aut vinciantur." But should the son 
be incapable of procuring sustenance for him- 

( 223 ) 

self, it would be highly injurious to condemn 
him to suffer the penalty of the laws : a simi- 
lar law prevailed at Athens, but was obliga- 
tory only on those persons whose parents had 
brought them up to some business or calling. 
There are other ways in which this popular 
adage may be properly applied, 

" Insani sapiens nomen ferat, zequus iniqui, 
Ultra quam satis est, virtutem si petat ipsam." 

We should take care that even our admiration 
of virtue be not carried to excess, but remem- 
ber, in our censures of the conduct of others, 
to make allowance for slight errors and imper- 
fections, such as are incident to the nature and 
state of man, which occasions that even our 
best works fall very short of perfection. " The 
archer who shoots beyond the mark misses it, 
as well as he that falls short of it." " We may 
grasp virtue," Montaigne says, " so hard, till 
it becomes vicious." No men are less be- 
loved than those who are too rigidly nice and 
exact in marking small errors in their families, 
though they censure nothing but what is, in 
a degree, reprehensible. " Quien las cosas 


( 224 ) 

mucho apura, no vive vida segura," he that is 
over-nice in looking into small errors, will never 
live an easy and quiet life. There should 
be a medium therefore in our prosecution of 
virtue, as well as in every other pursuit. 

Aberrare a Scopo, non attingere Scopum, extra 
Scopum jaculare. 

" To miss the mark," to throw beyond or 
over-shoot the mark, to be out or mistaken 
in our conjecture upon any subject. It is 
applicable to any one who in conversation or 
writing wanders from the subject proposed 
for discussion, as he was said " attingere sco- 
pum," " to hit the mark," who delivered what 
was pertinent or proper. 

Inexplebile Dolium, 

A cask which cannot be filled. An appe- 
tite that can never be satiated, a thirst after 
riches that no acquisition of fortune can sa- 
tisfy, have been aptly enough compared to a 


( 225 ) 

leaky vessel, that can never be filled, the liquor 
running out as fast as it is poured in. It 
may also be applied to persons who, from in- 
capacity or inattention, retain nothing that 
they have learned : it is labour lost, " it is like 
pouring water into a sieve," to attempt in- 
structing such persons. 

Aut bibat, aut abeat. 

Either drink or begone, and " Odi me- 
morem compotorem," I hate the man who 
tells what is said at the table. It was a 
custom among the ancients, and it is still fol- 
lowed, at their convivial meetings, to place one 
of the company at the head of the table as 
president or moderator for the day, whose 
orifice it was to see, among other things, that 
each of the guests drank his portion of wine; 
and this was one of the laws that was invaria- 
bly put in force, " either drink or leave the 
company," that none of them might be in a 
state to take advantage of any unguarded 
expression that might happn to be used. 
" Quando a Roma fueres, haz como vieres," 

Q that 

that is, " when we are at Rome, we should do 
as they do at Rome;" and we should, at least 
for the time, accommodate ourselves to the 
manners of those persons with whom we asso- 
ciate. Antipater of Sidon, who had possibly 
been traduced by one of these unfair intru- 
ders upon festivity, expresses his indignation 
against the whole tribe as follows : 

" Not the planet that sinking in ocean, 

Foretells future storms to our tars; 
Not the sea when in fearful commotion, 

Its billows swell high as the stars ; 
Not the thunder that rolls in October, 

Is so hateful to each honest fellow, 
As he who remembers when sober, 

The tales that were told him when mellow." 

What is told at such times has always been 
considered as " said under the rose," or under 
a seal of secrecy, of which the rose is an em- 
blem. The Germans were used to have a rose 
in painting or in sculpture on the ceilings of 
the rooms in which they caroused. The rose 
was the favoured flower of Venus, and was by 
Cupid dedicated to Harpocrates, the God of 
Silence, the votaries to his mother being parti- 

( 227 ) 

cularly interested that their rites should be 
kept secret : this property of the rose is cele- 
brated in the following tetrastic : 

" Est Rosa flos Veneris ; quo dulcia furta laterent, 
Harpocrati, matris dona, dicavit Amor; 
Inde rosam mensis hospes suspendit amicis, 
Convivze ut sub ea, dicta tacenda sciant." 

" The Rose was born for beauty's queen ; 

Young Love in playful hour, 
From eye and ear her thefts to screen, 
To Silence gave the flower. 

Hence o'er the friendly board the rose 

Suspended blush'd, to shew 
That he who would the joy disclose, 

Is mirth's and friendship's foe." 

Cicero seems to extend the meaning of the 
adage, to persons declaiming with too much 
violence against the miseries which all men 
suffer more or less in this life. Either be 
contented with what you meet with here, or 
leave them, and see what another world may 
afford you. With more propriety it may be 
applied to persons railing at the laws and 
manners of their own countries; either refrain 
from your censures, or go to some place where 
you imagine you shall fare better. 

Q 2 Frigidam 

( 228 ) 

Frigidam Aquam eff under e. 

" To throw cold water on a business," to 
retard its progress by idle scruples, or by more 
than necessary caution, is at least the manner 
in which the phrase is used by us. As few 
great actions can be achieved without some 
danger, or any work of eminence performed 
without hazard, to magnify these and to sup- 
pose them to be inevitable, because they are 
possible, is to check the progress of invention 
and improvement in the world. " Chi troppo 
s'assottiglia, si scavessa," who refines too much 
concludes nothing, or who makes himself too 
wise, becomes a fool. " He that regardeth 
the wind, shall not sow; and he that looketh 
at the clouds shall not reap ;" the face of the 
sky not affording certain signs, indicating 
that the weather will continue for a sufficient 
space of time favourable to those operations : 
we therefore say, " nothing venture, nothing 

" Our doubts are traitors, 

And make us lose the good we oft might win, 
By fearing to attempt." 


( 229 ) 

Stultus qui Pat re occiso, Liber os relinquat. 

Having killed the father, you should have 
destroyed the children also ; they being 
spared, will at some future time revenge the 
death of their parent. When the murderers in- 
formed Macbeth, that they had killed Banquo, 
but that Fleance his son was fled, " Then," said 
the king, " you have scotched the snake, not 
killed him." You should have taken care 
either not to have provoked the man, or you 
should have rendered him incapable of return- 
ing the affront. 

Oportet Testudinis Carnes aut edere aut non 

Either eat the turtle, that is eat plentifully 
of it, or leave it. " Do it or let it alone." 
This is said to unsteady or lukewarm persons 
who stand long hesitating, who will neither 
take nor leave what is offered them, or who set 
about a business with so ill a will, that it is 
impossible it should succeed. In literature, 

Q 3 such 

( 230 ) 

such waywardness is more likely to make 
men opiniative coxcombs than to improve 
their understandings, as we learn from these 
lines of Pope : 

" A little learning is a dangerous thing, 

Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring; 
There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain, 
But drinking largely sobers us again." 

The flesh of the turtle eaten sparingly, was. 
said to disagree with and disturb the stomach, 
but taken plentifully, to be innocent and salu 
tary, whence the adage. This, however, 
though believed by the ancients, is not very 
probable ; it is more consonant to reason, that 
it soon became putrid, and was therefore not 
fit to be long kept. 

Ab Ovo usque ad Mala. 

From the eggs to the apples, from the begin-* 
ning to the end ; it was said when a story or 
an account of any transaction was narrated 
circumstantially, from its commencement to 
its termination. Alluding to the tables of the 


Romans, at which eggs were first, apples last 

Bonce Leges ex mails Moribus procreantur. 

Good laws are the offspring of bad actions. 
If men were all just and honest, there would 
be no need of laws to restrain them. If there 
were no diseases, there would be no need of 
physicians ; if no crimes, there would be no 
occasion for judges, or executioners. Solon 
being asked why he had devised no punish- 
ment for parricides, said, " the crime was so 
horrible, he could not suppose it would ever 
be committed." 

Similes habent Labra Lactucas. 

" Like lips, like lettuce." Thistles suit the 
rough and hard lips of the ass, and coarse and 
plain diet the stomach of the clown ; employ- 
ments^ clothes, and entertainment should be 
adapted to the persons for whom they are pro- 
vided ; a dull scholar to a stupid master, and 
a froward wife to a peevish and churlish hus- 
Q 4 band. 

( 232 ) 

band. "It would be a pity," we say, " that 
two houses should be troubled with them." 
" Tal carne, tal cultello," the knife should 
suit the meat, and " Dios da el frio confonne 
a la ropa," the cold is fitted to the coat. The 
poor man with his thread-bare and tattered 
raiment, is no more incommoded by the cold 
than the rich man who is clothed with furs 
and velvets. Hence we say, " God suits the 
back to the burthen." Whenever we hear 
that a mean, sordid, and worthless man has 
committed some dirty act, we say it was of a 
piece with the man, no better could be ex- 
pected of him ; the action suited him as this- 
tles do the mouth of an ass, and this is the 
usual way of applying the proverb. To the 
same purport is, 

Dignum Patella Operculum. 

A cover worthy such a pot. " What better 
could be expected from such a stock," or, in 
a favourable way, nothing less was expected 
from so excellent a man ; though the adage 
is more commonly used in an unfavourable 
sense. We have however a phrase which seems 


( 233 ) 

to militate against the sense of this proverb, 
as when we say of a person performing un- 
willingly a duty imposed upon him, " he looks 
like an ass mumbling of thistles." 

Sijuxta claudum habit es, subclaudicare disces. 

If you dwell with the lame, you will learn 
to limp likewise. We are all prone to imitate 
those with whom we associate. Those who 
educate child ren^ therefore should be careful 
not to introduce among them any persons 
who squint, stammer, or have any remarkable 
defect in their gait, or who have any acquired 
habits that are unseemly or disgusting. But 
such is the capriciousness of mankind, that 
in pursuit of the idol fashion, they will 
not only subject themselves to inconvenience 
and pain, but will maim and distort their 
bodies, and fancy such perversions to be beau- 
ties. For examples of this kind, we need not 
recur to the ladies in China, who submit to be 
rendered cripples, in order to distinguish them- 
selves from the lower classes of women ; or to 
the Esquimaux and other uncultivated people, 


( 234 ) 

who wear fish bones stuck through their ears 
and nostrils, and deem them to be ornaments, 
who suffer themselves to be tattooed, or com- 
mit an hundred other extravagances, to add 
grace, as they suppose, and dignity to their 
persons. The absurdity of these customs have 
been equalled at the least by the ladies in this, 
and perhaps, in every other country in Europe; 
the high-heeled shoes, and the straight and 
stiff stays, so long the fashion here, occasion- 
ing to those who wore them as much pain, 
and were as prejudicial to their health, as the 
practices of the savages. But the ladies must 
not be allowed to bear the whole of the ridi- 
cule attached to these follies. The men may 
justly put in a claim for their share. It is 
known that Alexander the Great carried his 
head a little over the left shoulder. This de- 
fect in the prince soon became a fashion, and 
then, we are told, " not a soul stirred out un- 
til he had adjusted his neck-bone ; the whole 
nobility addressed the prince and each other 
obliquely, and all matters of importance were 
concerted and carried on in the Macedonian 
Court, with their polls on one side." As 


( 235 ) 

Dionysius was purblind, his courtiers, Plu- 
tarch says, the better to conciliate his favour, 
affecting to have the same deficiency, ran 
against each other, when in his presence, 
stumbled over stools, chairs, or whatever hap- 
pened to stand in their way ; and he speaks 
of another country, where the courtiers carried 
their adulation so far, that many of them re- 
pudiated wives whom they loved, in compli- 
ment to the tyrant who had put away his wife, 
with whom he was disgusted. Dr. Heberden 
gives a more recent instance of a similar folly. 
" When Lewis the XIV. happened to have a 
fistula, the French surgeons of that time com- 
plain of their being incessantly teazed by peo- 
ple who pretended, whatever their complaints 
were, that they proceeded from a fistula ; and 
if there had been in France, he adds, a mineral 
water reputed capable of giving it them, they 
would perhaps have flocked thither as eagerly 
as Englishmen resort to Bath, in order to get 
the gout, the fashionable disease of this coun- 

Cor rum- 

( 236 ) 
Corrumpunt Mores bonos Colloquia pram. 


" Evil communication corrupts good man- 
ners." If it is important to prevent children 
in particular from associating with those who 
have any personal defects, lest they should 
adopt them, it is still more necessary to guard 
them against the infection of depraved morals; 
which are more readily imbibed, take deeper 
root, and are with greater difficulty removed 
than those affecting only the person. " Cos- 
tumbre haze ley," custom has the force of a 
law, and " Mudar costumbre a par de muerte," 
to change a custom is next to death. " Tell 
me," we say, <{ with whom you associate, and 
I will tell you what you are." " Che dorme 
co cani, si leva col le pulci," those who sleep 
with dogs rise up with fleas, and " La mala 
compagnia, e quella che mena huomini a la 
furca," it is bad company that brings men to 
the gallows. "Company," Falstaff says, 

" Villanous company hath undone me ; 
Till 1 knew thee, Hal, I knew nothing." 

On the other hand, the Spaniards say, " Ari- 
mate a buenos, v seras uno dellos," associate 

* V 


( 237 ) 
with the good, and you will be esteemed one 


of them. 

Conscientia mills Testes. 

Conscience is as a thousand witnesses. We 
therefore say, " An evil conscience needs no 
accuser." " Heti quam difficile est, crimen 
non prodere vultu !" how difficult it is for a 
person accused of a crime to avoid betraying 
his guilt by his countenance. No man who 
has not been long trammelled in wickedness 
can bear this test. " Oh coward conscience, 
how dost thou affright me !" was the apos- 
trophe of Macbeth, after having murdered 
his sovereign. " Labour," Lord Bacon says, 
" to keep a good conscience ; for he that is dis- 
furnished thereof, hath fear for his bedfellow, 
care for his companion, and the sting of guilt 
for his torment." The following lines from 
the Thirteenth Satire of Juvenal as translated 
by Mr. Hodgson, give a terrible description 
of the power of conscience, in tormenting 
those, who may perhaps have escaped punish- 
ment by the insulted laws of their country, 


( 238 ) 

" Yet can we deem those traitors free from pain, 
Who the quick sense of villany retain ? 
Whom secret scorpions to confession urge, 
While torturing conscience shakes her bloody scourge? 
To them belongs more dreadful punishment 
Than laws can execute, or judge invent; 
By day, by night, condemn'd to hear within, 
The sleepless witness of their burning sin. 
These are the souls who shrink with pale affright, 
When harmless lightnings purge the sultry night; 
Who faint, when hollow rumblings from afar, 
Foretel the wrath of elemental war ; 
Nor deern it chance, nor wind that caus'd the din, 
But Jove himself in arms to punish sin." 

Not alien to the sense of the proverb, though 
dissimilar enough to the lines just quoted, is 
the following story : 

A clergyman with whom Brantome was 
acquainted, preaching to a polite audience 
on conjugal infidelity, said he understood 
there were some among them, who were so 
depraved as to wink at the infidelity of their 
wives, in favour of persons from whom they 
were soliciting preferment. And now, says 
he, I mean to strike the most culpable, lifting 
up his hand, as if about to throw something 
at him, on which a majority of the married 


( S39 ) 

men stooped down their heads ; waiting a small 
time, until they had recovered their seats, he 
added, I did suppose that some among you 
might be guilty, but I did not before know 
that so large a proportion of you were so. 

J\Iagistratus Virum indicat. 

The office shews the man. Men who have 
opulence and power, being under little re- 
straint, shew their natural dispositions, which 
those in more confined circumstances are 
obliged to check and subdue. Galba, who 
had passed through all the offices of the state 
\vith honour, when at length, and late in life, 
he was made Emperor of Rome, being pos- 
sessed of unlimited power, he became a 
monster of cruelty and avarice. He was, 
*' Omnium consensu, capax imperii, nisi irn- 
perasset," by the consent of all he would 
have been fit for the supreme command, if 
he had not attained to it ; and of Caligula, 
Suetonius says, "Nee servum meliorem ullum, 
nee deteriorem dominum fuisse," there never 


( 240 ) 

was a better servant, nor a worse master. 
Vespasian, on the other hand, who in the early 
part of his life, had been a voluptuary, and 
shewed little attention to business, being 
raised to empire, filled his post with so much 
honor, as to be called the Delight of Man- 
kind. " Solus imperatorum Vespasianus mu- 
tatus in melius," he was the only one of the 
emperors, who became a better man by being 
raised to the supreme command. 

Manllana Imperia. 

Any exceedingly harsh and severe sentence 
or punishment, was so called from Titus Man- 
lius, who ordered his own son to be first 
scourged, and then beheaded, the usual pu- 
nishment for disobedience of military orders, 
for having, in the heat of battle, advanced 
beyond his rank upon the enemy. The story 
adds, that Manlius, being some time after 
offered the consulship, declined accepting it, 
telling the people, that as they could not bear, 
his severity, for they had censured him for 


( 241 ) 

his cruelty, so neither could he bear their 

Sylosontis Chlamys* 

The garment of Syloson ; alluding to a rich 
cloak whicfo Syloson gave to Darius, before he 
came to the empire. The prince, pleased with 
the conduct of the man in making him so 
grateful a present, for the garment was exqui- 
sitely beautiful, as soon as he was advanced to 
the throne, gave him the sovereignty of the 
island of Samos. The proverb may be applied 
to any one conferring small favours on their 
superiors, in the expectation of getting some- 
thing of greater value. Syloson, the story 
adds, exercised his authority with so much 
severity, as usually happens when men of ob- 
scure birth are raised to high rank and dignity, 
that the people, tired with his tyranny and ra- 
paciousness, quitted the country in such num- 
bers, as in time to reduce it almost to a desert. 
This gave birth to the following, which became 
also proverbial. 

( 242 ) 

Opera Sylosontis ampla Reglb. 

Which may be rendered, By the favour of 
Syloson, there is now room enough, and may 
be applied on any similar occasion ; and it 
seems as if the present Emperor of the French 
wo'uld make room enough in all the countries 
that are so unfortunate as to be visifed by him. 
It may also be applied where any one has by 
extravagance emptied his coffers, or unfur- 
nished his house. 

Dii laneos Pecks habent. 

The gods have their feet shod with wool. 
" God comes with leaden feet, but strikes with 
iron hands.'' The ancients, by this enigmatical 
proverb, intimated that the judgments of the 
Deity were executed in so silent a manner, 
that trie offenders did not often perceive the 
approach of the punishment they were doomed 
to suffer, until they felt the stroke. But, 
"where vice is, vengeance follows." 

" Raro antecedentera scelestura 
Deseruit pede pcena claudo." 


( 243 ) 

Punishment, though deferred, rarely fails ul- 
timately to be inflicted on those who have' 

' - -" Vengeance, though slow paced, 
At length o'ertakes the guilty, and the -wrath 
Of the incensed powers, will fall most sure 
On wicked men, when they are most secure." 

Zenone modcratior. 

More temperate than Zeno; who, both by 
example and precept, is said to have inculcated, 
in his disciples the advantages of being plain 
in their apparel, consulting only what was ne- 
cessary and moderate in their diet, and in all 
other sensual enjoyments. As by following this 
regimen, they would have use for very little 
money for their personal conveniences, they 
might more readily bestow it, either for the 
benefit of their country, or on necessitous 

Aurum habet Tolosanum. 

He has got the gold of Tolosa. Tolosa was 
a town in Gallia Narbonensis, which became a 

R 2 Ro 

Roman colony under Augustus Caesar. Csepio, 
one of the consuls, having plundered a temple 
of Minerva, their tutelar deity, became from 
that time unfortunate in all his transactions; 
which was considered as a judgment upon him 
for his sacrilege. The same sentence continues 
to be passed on persons falling to decay, after 
having possessed large property, acquired by 
rapine : " I thought it would not thrive with 
him :" a harmless prejudice. To the same 
purport is the adage " Equus Sejanus," or the 
horse of Seius, which whoever possessed, came 
to a miserable end. This is said to have been 
the fate of four of its owners in succession. 
It was therefore said indifferently of persons 
who were very unfortunate, " He has the horse 
of Seius, or, the gold of Tolosa." 

Festina lente. 

44 On slow," a frequent motto on dials, and 
giving a name to a noble family in this 
country ; but to be considered here, as afford- 
ing an important rule for human actions. 
" Tarry a little, that we may make an end the 


( 245 ) 

sooner," was a favourite saying of Sir Amyas 
Paulet, that is, let us consider a little before 
we begin, and we shall get through the busi- 
ness with less interruption. " Qui nimis pro- 
pere, minus prospere,*' too much haste in the 
beginning, makes an unhappy ending. " Pro- 
pera propere," " make no more haste than good 
speed," for "haste makes waste." " Sat cito, 
si sat bene," "soon enough, if well enough." 
"Presto et bene, non conviene," hastily and 
well, rarely or never meet. " Pas a pas on 
va bien loin," step by step we may to a great 
distance go. " Chi va piano va sano, e anche 
lontano," who goes slowly, goes sure, and also 
far. " It is good to have a hatch before your 
door," that you may be stopped a minute or 
two before you get out, which may enable 
you to consider, whether you have taken with 
you every thing you may have occasion for 
in the business you are going upon. From 
these adages, and many more might be added, 
all bearing on the same point, we see how 
highly the precept has been esteemed in all 
ages. Erasmus thought it of such general 
utility, that it might not improperly be in- 
u 3 scribed 

( 246 ) 

scribed upon our public columns and build- 
ings, upon the doors of our houses, and upon 
our screens, or other pieces of furniture, and 
to be engraved upon our rings and seals, that 
it might be met by us whichever way we turned 
our eyes. " Poco a poco van lexos, y cor- 
riendo a mal lugar," slow and softly go far, the 
Spaniards say, and haste may bring the busi- 
ness to an ill conclusion. 

Difficilia quce pulchra. 

What is valuable is usually of difficult ac- 
quisition. Things that are rare and of great 
utility are not ordinarily to be obtained but 
with much labour. Learning, which contri- 
butes so much to distinguish those who are 
possessed of it, is not to be acquired but by 
long and continued study and application. It 
is difficult to restrain our passions, and to ac- 
quire habits of temperance and moderation, 
but these when obtained are of inestimable 
value. The difficulty with which arts and 
sciences are learned is so great, that few 
would undertake the labour of acquiring them 


( 247 

but for the pleasure and advantages they hold 
out to those who possess them. 

" Nothing endears 

A good, more than the contemplation : ' 
Of the difficulty >ve had to obtain it." . ; . ; 

" Non est e terris mollis ad:: astral via,," 
" narrow and difficult is the r way. thai 'Jeaids 'to 
life, but broad and easy that w/bidr$etods- to 
destruction," " Difficilius est sarciie coticor- 
diam, qtiam rumpere," how easy it is to sow 
dissensions and, strife among men, but how 
difficult to bring them again to peace and har- 
mony ! 

Cumini Sector. 

One who would carve or split a cummin seed. 
The adage was applied to persons who were 
extremely cautious, in examining into the evi- 
dence on which any report was founded, be- 
fore they admitted it as deserving credit. Of 
such a character was the Emperor Antoninus 
Pius, to whom the proverb was applied, for his 
patience and diligence in examining into the 
merits of the causes that came before him; 

R 4 and 

and if all persons were of the same disposi- 
tion, it would put a stop to more than half 
the broils, dissensions, and disputes which add 
so largely to the catalogue of evils* afflicting 
us ; but " oiii dire va par ville," idle reports 
that have no foundation, are quickly circu- 
lated and easily believed. The adage is, how- 
ever, more commonly applied to persons of 
mean and sordid dispositions, and has the 
same sense as, 

Ficos dividers, 

Persons who would cut a fig into parts, or 
as we say, " who would flay a flint." " He will 
tlress an egg and give the broth to the poor." 
Though the fruit is not a native of this coun- 
try) yet when we mean to .speak contemptu- 
ously of any one, we say, " a fig for him," and 
" under my cloak," the Spaniards say, " a fig 
for the king. " 

Neminijidas, nisi cum quo prius Modium 
Salis absumpseris. 

Or as the French say, " pour bieu connoitre 

( 249 ) 

iin homme, il faut avoir mange un muid de 
sel avec lui." As a friend is " alter ipse," ano- 
ther self, to whom the most secret transactions 
of your life may be communicated, it is neces- 
sary you should be well acquainted with him, 
before he be admitted to this intimate fami- 
liarity, or that you should have known- him, 
as the adage expresses it, so long that you 
might have eaten a peck of salt with him. 
Salt among the eastern nations was the type 
of hospitality, and for its many useful quali- 
ties, particularly for its power of preserving 
bodies from putrefaction, it seems to have 
been every where had in high estimation ; 
which is the reason, probably, M'hy it is named 
here in preference to bread, or other articles 
also in daily use at our tables. 

Multas Amicitias Silentium diremit. 

Silence or neglect destroys friendship. " Non 
sunt amici qui degunt procul," they will 
not ordinarily long continue to be friends, 
who live at a great distance from each other. 


As we should not be 'hasty in forming 
nections, so having -formed tliem, we should 
cultivate them with care, and strengthen the 
intimacy by frequent conversation and cor- 
respondence. " Lontano dag'li occhi lontano 
del cuore." " Loin des yeux, lorn du coeur," 
" out of sight, out of mind." : 

Pulchrl dixti. Bd& narras. 

You have made out a pretty story, was 
used to be said, ironically, to any one who had 
failed egregiously in delivering message or 
telling a story ; and similar forms of speech 
are not uncommon among ourselves. 

Rara Avis. 

He is a rare bird indeed, was used to be said 
of any one doing an act of unusual generosity 
or goodness; or of a man of such strict mo- 
rality, that he would not do a mean or unjust 
action though he might without fear or de- 
tection obtain a fortune by it. A'character 
which, though very unco'mntoh in the later 


( 251 ) 

ages of the Roman empire, is, I trust and be- 
liev.e, by no means so at this time, in this 
country : 

" Kara avis in terris, nigroque simillima cygno." 
" Corvo quoque rarior albo." 

A phenomenon more rare, Juvenal supposes, 
than a white crow or a black swan. 

Naribus trahere. 

" Menar uno per il naso," It. " Mener par 
le nez," " to lead any one by the nose." To 
obtain so much influence or such command 
over any one, as to induce him to do what- 
ever you advise, though equally averse to his 
inclination and his interest. The phrase 
takes its origin from the custom of leading 
animals by rings passed through their nostrils. 
This, by ecclesiastical lawyers, is called " hav- 
ing the advowson of a man's conscience." 
Does not this apply equally to the leaders of 
majorities and minorities in certain assem- 
blies ? 


( 252 ) 

Ama tanquam osurus. Odcris tanquam 

Or, as the Spaniards say, " quando estes en 
enojo, acuerdate que puedes venir a paz, y 
quando estes en paz, acuerdate que puedes 
venir a enojo," that is, when you are angry 
with any one, consider that you may be re- 
conciled ; and when you are friends with any 
one, that you may be at enmity with him ; 
therefore, " del mal que hizieres no tengas 
testigo, aunque sea tu amigo," you should not 
be so communicative even to your most inti- 
mate friend, as to make him privy to your 
failings, still less to the vices of which you 
should be guilty, as it might tend to alienate 
him from you, or enable him to do you an 
injury, if your connection should by any 
means be dissolved ; an event which, from the 
mutability of human affairs and dispositions, 
should always be considered as possible at 
least : neither should you, on the other 
hand, reproach your enemy so bitterly, or 
tax him with faults so atrocious, as to make 


Jt impossible he should ever forgive you ; 
as circumstances may occur that may make 
it your mutual advantage, or even render 
it necessary that your acquaintance should 
be renewed. Erasmus states, as one of the 
evils attendant on publishing letters to and 
from our friends, that occurrences may happen 
obliging us to change our opinions, and to 
censure those whom we had commended, or to 
praise those whom we had before censured : 
" jam et illud est incommodi, quod, ut nunc res 
sunt mortalium, ex amicissimis nonnunquam 
reddantur inimicissimi, et contra ; ut et illos 
laudatos, et hos doleas attactos." Erasmus 
speaks feelingly here, finding himself called 
upon in the latter part of his life, to censure 
Ulric Hutton, a violent and turbulent man, 
whom in his early works he had liberally com- 

The following observation of the poet 
Burns, may be added as further illustrating 
this adage. " I am not sure," he says, " not- 
withstanding all the sentimental flights of no- 
vel-writers, and the sagephilosophy of moralists, 
whether we are capable of so intimate and cor- 

( 254 ) 

dial a coalition of friendship, as that one mail 
may pour out his bosom, his very thought, 
and floating fancy, his very inmost soul, with 
unreserved confidence to another, without 
hazard of losing part of that respect which man 
deserves from man ; or from the unavoidable 
imperfection attending human nature, of one 
day repenting his confidence." Cicero was, 
however, of opinion, that nothing could be 
more hostile to the idea of genuine friendship, 
than the sentiment contained in this adage, 
neither could he believe that it was the saying 
of so wise a man as Bion, to whom it is attri- 
buted. Certainly it is not in accord with the 
picture of true friendship, given in the eluci- 
dation of the first and third adages in this : 

Ne Malorum memineris* 

Do not revive the memory of troubles that 
are past. " Repeat no grievances." The thirty 
tyrants, who had seized upon the government 
of Athens, having been expelled by Thrasy- 
bulus, he enacted a law, "Ne quis de prasteritis 


actis accusaretur, aut mulctaretur," that nd 
persons should be accused or punished for the 
part they had taken during the civil dissen- 
sions. He added, "Ne malorum memoriam 
revoces," whieh is said to have given origin 
to the adage. Not alien to this is what is re- 
lated of the Emperor Charles the Fifth. When 
he entered Wittenburgh, in the year 1547, he 
was much pressed by the Spaniards who were 
in his army, to destroy the monument which 
had been erected there to Luther, but he 
severely reproved them, under penalty of the 
forfeiture of their lives, from disturbing the 
ashes of that celebrated reformer, to whom he 
had nevertheless been, while living, an impla- 
cable enemy ; adding, " Nihil mini ultra cum 
Luthero," I have nothing further to do with 
Luther, he is now amenable to another and a 
higher tribunal; neither is it my custom to- 
war with the dead, but with those who are 
living, and appear in arms against me. Similar 
to this was the conduct of Lewis the Eleventh. 
When he was urged to deface the monument 
of John, Duke of Bedford, who had been 
Regent of France in the time of Henry the 


( 256 ) 

Sixth: " He would not," he said, "disturb thft 
ashes of the man, whom all France could not 
repel when living." Our King Charles the 
Second, being recalled from banishment, and 
put in possession of his crown and kingdom, 
after passing an act of amnesty, required of 
his courtiers that they should make no further 
mention of their past sufferings, and on any 
allusion to them being made, he was used to 
check them, reminding them of one of his 
father's golden rules, that they were " to re- 
peat oo grievances." 

Septennis guum sit, nondum edidit Denies. 

Though he is seven years of age, he has not 
yet cut his teeth, was used to be said to per- 
sons, who, though men in years, were, in their 
actions, and in their understanding, only 
children ; to men passing their time in idle 
and boyish amusements, or asking questions 
on subjects so trifling and common, that it 
would be disgraceful even for children to be 
ignorant of them. We say of a person who 
suffers himself to be easily outwitted, " he has 


( 257 ) 

not got all his teeth," or "he has not cut his 

Canis festinans cacos parit Catulos. 

The dog hastening to produce its young, 
brings them into the world blind, that is, im- 
mature, and before they are completely formed. 
This was used, and may be applied to persons 
who are in so much haste to finish what they 
undertake, that they leave it imperfect. Those 
err similarly, who are too precipitate in giving 
their opinion on any work, or action, before 
they have had time to examine into its merit. 

Lingua, quo vadis ? 

Tongue, whither are you going ? The tongue 
has been compared, and not unaptly, to the 
helm of a ship; though it makes but a small 
part of the vessel, yet upon its right or im- 
proper movement, depends the safety or de- 
struction of the whole. How valuable a dis- 
creet and eloquent tongue is, and on the other 
hand, what confusion and distress a hasty and 

s tur- 

( 258 ) 

turbulent tongue often occasions, we all of us 
know ; hence the phrase 

" Vincula da linguae, vel tibi vinc'la dabit." 

Confine your tongue, or it will bring you into 
confinement. Amasis, king of Egypt, having 
ordered the philosopher Bias to send him the 
best and the worst part of a victim about to 
be sacrificed, Bias sent him the tongue of 
the animal, intimating, that according as it 
was used, that was the part which was capable 
of producing the greatest good, or the greatest 
evil to the possessor. " Tel coup de langue, 
est pire qu'un coup de lance," a stab with the 
tongue is worse than a thrust with a lance. 

In Node Com ilium. 

lt La notte 6 madre di pensiera," night is the 
mother of reflection. "La nuit donne conseil,' r 
consult, or take counsel of your pillow; that 
is, do not precipitately, and on the first pro- 
posal, enter into any engagement, that may 
have a material influence on your future pro- 
spects in life. It is better to sleep, that is, to 
deliberate on a business proposed to be done, 


than to be kept awake by reflections on its 
being improvidently finished. Indeed a habit 
of deliberating before you act, is useful in in- 
ferior matters, taking care, however, that it 
may not degenerate into a futile, and trifling 
affectation of gravity, that may make you 
ridiculous. Our English proverb says, " On 
a good bargain think twice." A wise man 
rarely determines on the merit of an offer, on 
the first view of it, however advantageous it 
may seem. A more intimate acquaintance is 
wanted to enable him to decide on its actual 
value. The worth of the object may be greater 
than the price at which it is offered ; but he 
will consider whether it may be wanted by him, 
or whether by purchasing it at that time, he 
may not subject himself to greater inconve- 
niences, than the advantages proposed by pos- 
sessing it will compensate. "Bon march6 tire 
1'argent hors de la bourse," " a good bargain 
is a pick-purse." People are often induced to 
buy an article because it is cheap, but, "Com- 
pra lo que no has menester, y venderas lo que 
no podras escusar," " buy what thou hast no 
need of, and ere long thou shalt sell thy ne- 
s2 cessaries;" 

( 260 ) 

cessaries;" and " Quod non opus est asse carum 
est," what is not wanted is dear even at a 

Fronti nulla Fides. 

Too much credit must not be given to ap- 
pearances. "No es todo oro, lo que reluce," 
and " Tout ce qui reluit n'est pas or," for, all 
is not gold that glitters. A beautiful woman 
may be a shrew; or a fine horse vicious, or an 
ill-goer. A story may be told in such a man- 
ner, as to induce us to entertain a much more 
favourable opinion of the principal actor in it, 
than on a further investigation he shall appear 
to deserve. Hence the legal maxim, "Audi 
alteram partem," hear the other side. The rule 
intended to be inculcated by this maxim, has 
been given by the ancients in twenty different 
forms, and is in the mouth of every one ; but 
though it is so generally known, and the utility 
of it so universally assented to, yet it is far 
from having that influence on our conduct, 
which it seems calculated to produce. 


( 261 ) 

Coronam quidem gestans, cceterum Siti per- 

Though bearing a crown, that is, abundantly 
honoured, yet dying of thirst, or in want of 
necessaries. The adage is supposed to have 
taken its origin from the fate of one Connas, 
who had been frequently victor in the Olym- 
pic and, other games, and therefore often 
crowned, and yet was suffered to live and die 
in misery and wretchedness. This fate has 
attended more than one of the votaries to the 
Muses in this country ; though it may be 
doubted whether this has happened so much 
through the want of patrons and friends, as 
from an incorrigible habit of idleness, and dis- 
sipation in the sufferers. This was certainly 
the case with Savage, and in a stronger degree 
with Moreland, an artist of our own time, 
famed for his talent in painting rustic scenes. 
He died indeed miserable, but rather of drunk- 
enness, the vice of Connas also, than of want. 
He chose rather, the later years of his life, to 
live concealed from his creditors, than by very 
moderate exertions, to get what would have 
been sufficient to pay his debts, and to support 
s 3 him- 

himself with credit. The adage was used to 
be applied to persons, whose friends were more 
liberal in their praise, than in what was neces- 
sary for their support and subsistence. 

Ubi quis dolet. ibi et ManumJ'requens habet. 

"We must scratch where it itches." The 
hand will be frequently and spontaneously 
moved to the part that is grieved. " Alia va 
la lengua, do duele la muela," the tongue goes 
to the tooth that is in pain. Men are with 
difficulty kept from talking of their misfor- 
tunes, or of whatever strongly affects them. 
' What the mind thinks, the tongue speaks," 
or, " Out of the abundance of the heart, the 
mouth speaketh." In conversation men are 
apt on all occasions to introduce the subjects 
that happen to employ their attention; to talk 
of their professions, their business, their tra- 
vels, or their troubles, without considering 
how uninteresting, or even annoying, they 
must be to the auditors, and that such dis- 
courses should be deferred until the persons 
we mean to entertain, may call for, or at the 


( 263 ) 

least be disposed to hear them. " Dios te librc 
de 1'hombre de un libro," God keep you, the 
Spaniards say, from the man who has but one 

Quod licet ingratum est, quod non licet 
acrius uret. 

While it was permitted, we looked upon it 
with indifference, it was not until it was 
prohibited that we anxiously longed for it. 
<f Communiter negligitur, quod communiter 
possidetur," what is common, and may be 
easily obtained, is in little request. 

" Man's curse is, things forbid still to pursue, 
What's freely offered, not to hold worth view." 

" Furem signata solicitant, aperta effractarius 
praeterit," things sealed up excite the cupidity 
of the thief, but what lies open is passed by 
unnoticed. It was the opinion of one of the 
ancients, that executions rather whet than 
blunt the edge of vice ; that they do not pro- 
duce a desire to do well, but only a care not 
to be taken in doing ill. 

s 4 Hinc 

H'mc illce Lachrymce. 

Hence these tears, hence all the concern 
he has shewn ; I have not praised his works, 
or joined in his projects to amuse and deceive 
the public. The adage may be applied on dis- 
covering the true causes of the complaints or 
actions of any one, which he had studiously 
endeavoured to conceal, and to such a cir- 
cumstance it owes its origin. Simo, in the 
Andrian, supposed at first, that the concern 
his son manifested on the death of Chryses, 
proceeded from his friendship for the deceased, 
but finding, at length, that it arose from his 
affection to her sister, equally disappointed 
and concerned at the discovery, he burst out 
into the exclamation, " Hinc illffi lachrymal," 
this then was the cause of his concern. 

Ignis, Mare, Mulier, tria Mala. 

Which cannot be better explained than by * 
the following lines of Prior. 

*' Fire, water, woman, are man's ruin, 
Says wise professor Vander Bruin." 


( 265 ) 

" By flames, a house I hired, was lost 
Last year, and I must pay the cost. 
Next year the sea o'erflowed my ground, 
And my best Flanders mare was drowned. 
A slave I am to Clara's eyes, 
The gipsey knows her power and flies. 
Fire, water, woman, are my ruin, 
And great thy wisdom, Vander Bruin." 

This is something better than the answer of 
the Lacedemonian, who being ridiculed for 
having married a very little woman, excused 
himself, by observing, "that of evils, we should 
choose the least." The Spartans, we are told, 
fined their king Archidamus, for marrying a 
very little woman, concluding that the breed 
would degenerate, and that she could only 
produce kinglets. 

Aureopiscari Hamo. 

" Peschar col hamo d'argento," fishing with 
a golden or silver hook. Men are often so 
eager in pursuit of some favourite object, that 
they care not at what cost it is obtained; but 
which, when acquired, they find to be of little 
value. This is fishing with a golden hook. 


The proverb was frequent in the mouth of 
Augustus Csesar, who used it to restrain the 
young men of fashion, at his court, when he 
saw them lavishing their fortunes, to obtain 
the reputation of having more stately houses, 
richer furniture, or finer horses, than others of 
their rank, from which they would reap no 
solid advantage. It took its rise from a prac- 
tice not uncommon with persons who have 
been unsuccessful in their sport, who purchase 
of more fortunate fishermen a part of what 
they have taken, that they may not, by carry- 
ing home empty bags, subject themselves to 
the laughter of their friends. These therefore 
literally fish with golden hooks. 

Sera infundo Parcimonia. 

It is too late to begin to save when all is 

" It is too late to spare 
When me bottom is bare." 

" Bolsa vazia faz 6 homo sesuda mas tarde, 
an empty purse makes a man wise too late. 
To these apothegms we may oppose, "Meglio 


( 267 ) 

tarde die mai, " " II vaut mieux tarcl que 
jamais," " Better late than never," and " It 
is never too late to mend." Though by a long 
course of imprudence we may have reduced 
ourselves to great inconvenience or distress, 
we should not despair, scarcely any thing be- 
ing impossible for labour and perseverance to 
achieve. "Aogni cosa e remedio, fuora qu' 
alia morte," there is a remedy for every thing 
but death. "Thomas Sackville, earl of Dorset, 
having wasted his fortune, was so shocked at 
being made to wait in an anti-room at the 
house of a citizen, where he went to borrow 
money, that he resolved from thenceforward 
to become an economist, and by that means 
recovered his estate." The proverb, however, 
means to recommend that we should pay early 
attention to our affairs, and set bounds to 
our expenditure, while our estates are entire. 
" When thou hast enough, remember the time 
of hunger; and when thou art rich, think upon 
poverty and need:" take care "that you do 
not make the sail too big for the vessel, lest it 
should sink." Plato, seeing a young man of 
good family, who had wasted his estate, sitting 


( 268 ) 

at the door of an inn, feeding on offals, said 
to those who were with him, " If this man 
had dined temperately, he needed not to have 
supped so sparingly." We should consider 
that love and respect are rarely conceded to 
a lost fortune, and that adversity seldom meets 
with the returns of friendship. "Quien a mano 
egena espera, mal yanta y peor cena," he that 
depends upon another for subsistence, break- 
fasts ill, and sups worse. A man of good edu- 
cation, without money, has been compared to 
a ship that is well-rigged, but is detained in 
port for want of a favourable wind. " Amasser 
en saison, depenser par raison, font la bonne 
maison," a seasonable gathering, and a reason- 
able spending make a good housekeeping. By 
a decree of the Emperor Adrian, men who had 
wasted their property by gaming, or by fol- 
lowing profligate courses, were publicly put 
to shame. In later times, the Tuscans brought 
such men into the market, on a bier, with an 
empty purse before them, and they were obliged 
to sit there the whole day, exposed to the de- 
rision of the people. Our stocks would be a 
good substitute for the bier. At Padua they 


( 269 ) 

had a stone, called the seat of turpitude, near 
the senate-house, where spendthrifts were com- 
pelled to sit with their hinder parts bare, that 
by thejr disgrace others might be deterred 
from copying their vices. It is too late also 
at the latter part of our lives, then to begin to 
learn how to live, for though it be true, that 
" nulla astas ad perdiscendum sera est," that 
is, that it is not impracticable to learn at a 
late period ; yet at such a term, we can neither 
hope to make the proficiency we might have 
done, or to enjoy the benefit from it we should 
have obtained if we had begun earlier. 

Homines frugi omnia rectkfaciunt. 

By a frugal man you may expect every 
thing to be justly and faithfully performed. 
The same value was attributed to prudence, 
which is indeed only another word for fru- 
gality; " nullum numen abest si sit pru- 
dentia," for without prudence there can be no 
virtue. " Sum bonus et frugi," I am honest 
and careful, Horace makes his servant say, as 
including every virtue. The word frugi among 


( 270 ) 

the Romans was of a very extensive significa- 
tion, comprehending under it, justice, forti- 
tude, constancy and temperance ; by Cicero 
it is opposed to nequam, and frugalitas to 
neqnitia, as if he thought it impossible for the 
improvident and careless to be other than pro- 
fligate and wicked, and not perhaps without 
reason, as he who is not frugal, will not long 
avoid being involved in debt, and he who is 
deeply plunged in debt, will be so often ob- 
liged to break his engagements, that he will at 
length lose all sense of distinction between 


truth and falsehood; " for lying," as Panta- 
gruel tells Panurge, " is only the second vice, 
the first vice is being in debt;'' a maxim, 
Plutarch says, we have taken from the Per- 
sians. Not alien to this is the Italian pro- 
verb, " un oncia di prudenza val piu che una 
libra d' oro," an ounce of prudence is better 
than a pound of gold, and " chi semina virtu 
fama raccogli,'' who sows virtue reaps fame. 
Sir George Mackenzie, in his history of fru- 
gality, says, he heard a Dutch ambassador 
tell King Charles the Second, that he had 
spent only an hundred guilders in meat and 


( 271 ) 

drink in Holland, during a whole year, nor 
had he ever been in better health or company ; 
and when the King asked him why he had 
done so unusual a thing, he answered, to let 
his countrymen see, that one needed not to 
have recourse to mean, still less to vicious 
practices to get whereon to live : but " there 
needed no ghost, methinks, to tell his country- 
men that." 

Simul sorbere et flare difficile est. 

" Sorber y soplar, no se puecle hazar a la 
par," it is difficult to sup and blow, that is, to 
drink and talk at the same time. Whatever 
our employment or pursuit may be, to that we 
should direct our thoughts and not distract 
our minds by attempting a variety of different 
projects at the same time. To bring any one 
art or science to perfection, or to achieve any 
great object will require our undivided atten- 
tion, and must be persevered in for a long 
course of time. Milton would not have at- 
tained to the eminence to which he rose ill 
poetry, nor Newton in philosophy, if they had 


( 272 ) 

not confined their studies to those objects. 
Rightly therefore the bard, 

" One science only will one genius fit, 
So vast is art, so narrow human wit." 

We are also told in the Scriptures, " that no 
man can serve two masters," and that " we 
cannot serve God and Mammon." " You can- 
not," Phocion said to Antipater, " have me 
both for your flatterer and your friend :" and 
no man, we are told, can be at once prudent 
and in love. 

" Amare et sapere vix Deo conceditur." 
And the Spaniards say, that honor and profit 
cannot exist together, or cannot be contained 
in one and the same bag, " Honor y provecho 
no caben en un saco." The adage was used 
by a servant in one of the comedies of Plau- 
tus, whose master had required of him what 
was impracticable, viz. to be giving him as- 
sistance at home, and doing his business 
abroad at the same time. 

In Herba esse. 

The corn is as yet in the blade, " you are 


( 273 ) 

counting your chickens before they are hatch- 
ed;" " hazer la cuenta sin la huespida," or 
" reckoning without your host," and " spend- 
ing your Michaelmas rent in the Midsummer 
moon ;" not considering how many accidents 
may happen to thwart and disappoint your 
expectations. Young and inexperienced per- 
sons are very apt, as soon as they have formed 
a plausible project, to begin to reckon their 
profits and often to spend them too, and take 
it unkind of their friends if they disturb their 
confidence with doubts, or do not enter into 
their schemes with equal ardour and precipi- 
tancy. Poets are also apt, my text says, to 
exult too much, on hearing their compositions 
praised by those to whom they read them ; 
but they should wait if they would know their 
true character, until the public have given 
their opinion, or until time has stamped them 
with its- seal. 

Inter indoctos etiam Corydus sonat. 

To those unskilled in music the note of the 

sparrow may be agreeable, as among illiterate 

T person s 

( 274 ) 

persons a dunce may be held in some estima- 
tion. The corydus is a species of larks, of a 
very inferior quality, which were found in 
great abundance near Athens: but as the lark 
has some credit among us for its note, the 
sparrow is here substituted as better according 
with the intention of the adage. " Luscus 
convitia jacit in caecum," or " borgne est roy 
entre les aveugles," he that hath one eye is a 
king among the blind ; and " dixo el cuervo 
a la corneja, quita os alia negra," the crow 
bids the rook put off his black coat, and the 
rook makes the same proposal to the crow. 

Ficum cupit. 

He wants figs. This was used to be said of 
any one paying particular attention to per- 
sons much beneath him ; meaning, he is court- 
ing me for his own purpose, as may be said 
of our gentry going into the shops of little 
traders on the eve of a general election, spend- 
ing their money with them liberally and treat- 
ing them with unusual civility : he wants my 


The Athenians were used on the approach 
of the season when the figs were coming to 
perfection, to visit the cots of the neighbour- 
ing peasants, and treat them with great fami- 
liarity and kindness, that they might procure 
from them some of the finest of the fruit ; 
which the rustics at length perceiving, when 
any one they did not know, addressed them 
in that manner, they would say, what you 
want, I suppose, some of our figs ; which 
thence became proverbial. 

Odium Vatinianum. 

Vatinian hatred, by which the Romans 
meant to express, an inextinguishable hatred, 
such as they bore to Vatinus, for his flagi- 
tious vices and cruelty, which had been ex- 
posed to them by Cicero. 

Ficus Fiats, Ligonem Ligonem vocat. 

He calls a fig, a fig ; a spade, a spade. That 

is, he is a man of plain and rustic manners, 

T 2 and 

( 276 ) 

and calls every thing by its name. " He is 
Tom tell-truth." He tells his story as it had 
been related to him, and is no respecter of 
persons. If a man is just and upright, he gives 
him due honour; if crafty and deceitful, what- 
ever may be his quality, he calls him a knave. 
" But vice has persuaded custom," Sir William 
Cornwallis observes, " that to call naught, 
naught, is uncivil and dangerous." At any 
rate, let those who have any hidden, or not 
generally known vices, take care how they 
descant upon the follies or vices of others, lest 
their own faults should be drawn from their 
covert, and exposed to the world. " Desinant 
maledicere, malefacta ni noscant sua." . 

Bona magis carendo quam fruendo sentimus. 

We perceive more the value of an object 
when it has escaped from us, than we did when 
possessing it, and " Bona a tergo formosis- 
sima," good things rarely appear to us in their 
full beauty, until we are about to lose them. 
The poor man, in the fable, did not know 
to what degree he valued life, until death, 


( 277 ) 

whom he had called for, came to take it from 

" Pleasures are ever in our hands or eyes, 
And when in act they cease, in prospect rise." 

" Vdche ne sfait que vaut se queue, 
Jusques a ce qu'elle 1'ait perdue." 

The co\v did not know the value of her tail, 
until she had lost it. 

" What we have we prize not to the worth, 
Whiles we enjoy it; but being lack'd and lost, 
Why then we rack the value; then we find 
The virtue, that possession would not give us 
Whiles it was ours." 

ad Aures guidem scalpendas Ocium est. 

He is so full of business, that he has not 
time to scratch his ears, by which hyperbolical 
expression, the ancients designated persons so 
overwhelmed by a multiplicity of employments, 
as not to leave them leisure for the most com- 
mon and necessary concerns. 

T 3 Quot 

Quot Servi tot Hostes. 

Who has many servants, has as many ene- 
mies, which is the way I should choose to 
read the adage. If your servants are slaves, 
purchased, or taken in war, as they will he 
perpetually seeking means to free themselves 
from bondage, the more there are of them the 
greater the danger, and these are probably the 
servants alluded to. In this sense it is not less 
true when applied to servants who are hired, 
and may be supposed to serve voluntarily. If 
you keep more than you have employment 
for, they will corrupt each other, and become 
vicious through idleness. " Quien ha criados, 
ha enemigos no escusados," he who has ser- 
vants, has unavoidable enemies. As they can- 
not be dispensed with, they are therefore ne- 
cessary evils. 

The adage more particularly admonishes, 
that you do not make confidents of them, but 
as far as you are able, keep from them the 
knowledge of all circumstances, which di- 
vulged might injure you ; but this, if there 
are many of them, will not be easily effected. 

On this subject Juvenal says, 

O Co- 

" O Corydon, Corydon, secretum divitis ullum 
Esse putas ? Servi ut taceant ?" 

which take as translated by Dryden : 

" Dull Corydon ! art thou so stupid grown, 
To think a rich man's faults can be unknown ? 
Has he not slaves about him ? would not they 
Rejoice and laugh, his secrets to betray? 
What more effectual to revenge their wrongs, 
Than the unbounded freedom of their tongues?" 

And though little attention might be paid to 
their suffrages, in commendation of their mas- 
ters, any scandal they may propagate, will be 
readily enough believed. For as the same Poet 

" On eagle's wings immortal scandals fly, 
While virtuous actions are but born and die." 

Prcevisus ante, mollior Ictus venit. 

A misfortune that is foreseen affects us less 
keenly, than one that falls upon us suddenly 
and unexpectedly : we may also by foreseeing 
what is about to happen, if not altogether 
avoid the stroke, contrive to make it less hurt- 
ful to us. Of kin to this, is 

T 4 Prce- 

( 280 ) 

Prcemonitus, Pramunitus. 

" Forewarned, forearmed ;" which may be 
said to any one threatening vengeance. I 
thank you for your candour in advertising me 
of your intention, I shall now take care to be 
prepared for you. 

Stultum est timer e quod vitari non potest. 

It is foolish to distress ourselves for what 
cannot be prevented ; instead of uselessly la- 
menting we should summon up our courage, 
and endeavour to accommodate ourselves to 
the new situation into which we have been 
thrown by our misfortunes ; remembering* 
" that what can't be cured, must be endured." 

Optimum aliena Insanidfrui. 

It is good to profit by the follies of others. 
" Experience," we say, " makes even fools 
wise," but wise men gain experience from the 


( 281 ) 

misfortunes of others, fools only from their 
own ; 

" Ex vitio alterius, sapiens emendat suum." 

" It is a pleasure," Lord Verulam says, from 
Lucretius, " to stand upon the shore and 
to see ships tost upon the sea; a pleasure 
to stand in the window of a castle, and to 
see a battle and the adventure thereof below ; 
but no pleasure is comparable to the standing 
upon the vantage ground of truth, and to see 
the errors and wanderings, and mists and tem- 
pests in the vale below. So always," he adds, 
" that this prospect be with pity, and not with 
swelling or pride." 

Acti Labores jucundi. 

The remembrance of dangers that are past 
is pleasant, particularly if we have escaped by 
our own activity, skill, or courage. 

Homo est Bulla. 

Human life is a bubble. So frail and unsta- 
ble is life, so assailable and liable to disease and 
accidents, and so easily extinguishable, that 


( 282 ) 

it is not unaptly compared to a bubble, which 
rising upon water or any other fluid, bursts 
and disappears almost as soon as it is formed, 
and is succeeded by others equally unsubstan- 
tial and evanescent. This fragility of human 
life is very properly adduced as an argument 
of the immortality of the soul ; the deity 
would not have produced into the world a 
being endowed with such powers, so capable 
of acquiring knowledge, merely to flutter a 
few hours on this stage and then to be lost for 
.ever. If that were the case, we might then 
agree with those philosophers who held it 
to be 

Optimum non nasci. 

Better not to be born, or to have died as 
soon as we had seen the light, and before 
we should have been subjected " to the thou- 
sand natural ills that flesh is heir to." " II n'y 
& personne heureux au monde," the French 
say, " que celui qui meurt en maillet," none 
can be esteemed happy but such as die in 
their swaddling clothes; and the Italians to 


( 283 ) 

the same purport, " nel mondo non e felice se 
non quel che muore in fascie :" for 

" " Medio de fonte leporum 

Surgit amairaliquid." 

Even in the midst of our festivity some me- 
lancholy thoughts will intrude themselves to 
dash our mirth. And Solomon says, " where- 
fore I praised the dead, which are already 
dead, more than the living, which are yet 
alive; yea, better is he than both they, which 
hath not yet been, who hath not seen the evil 
work that is done under the sun." This sen- 
timent is amplified in the following lines of 
Prior's Solomon : 

" Thrice happy is the man who now at last, 
Has through this doleful vale of misery past J 
Who to his destined stage, has carried on 
The tedious load, and laid his burthen down. 
He's happier, yet, who privileged by fate, 
To shorter labour, and a lighter weight, 
Received but yesterday the gift of breath, 
Ordered to-morrow to return to death." 


On this theme the Grecian poets and philo- 
sophers are very eloquent; with them, " dolere 
ac vivere," to suffer and to live, were syno- 


( 284 ) 

nimous. The following from Translations from 
the Greek Anthology will shew this opinion 
of the ancients better than any thing I could 

" Thracians who howl around an infant's birth, 
And give the funeral hour to songs and mirth, 
Well in your grief and gladness are express'd, 
That life is labour, and that death is rest." 

and these, 

" Why fear ye death, the parent of repose, 
Who numbs the sense of penury and pain ? 
He comes but only once ; nor ever throws, 
Triumphant once, his painful shaft again ; 
But countless ills upon our life intrude, 
Recurring oft in sad vicissitude." 

I shall insert one other specimen from an un- 
known writer, taken from the same collection. 

" Waking we burst at each return of morn, 
From death's dull fetters, and again are born ; 
No longer ours the moments that are past, 
To a new remnant of our lives we haste. 
Call not the years thine own that made thee grey, 
That left their wrinkles, and are fled away ; 
The past no more shall yield thee ill or good, 
Gone to the silent times beyond the flood." 

That life has its evils, and that they more than 
balance its comforts, is pretty generally ad- 
mitted ; 

( 285 ) 

mitted ; yet we find that even a long continu- 
aace of pain and distress, have not the power, 
in many of us, of weaning us from a fondness 
for it. Seneca makes one of his characters say, 

" Debilem facito manu, 
Debilem pede, cox4, 
Lubricos quate dentes, 
Vita dura superest, bene est." 

Take from me the use of my hands and of my 
feet, dash out my teeth, and inflict upon me a 
thousand other ills, preserve but my life, and 
I will still be contented. 

" Oh what a dreadful thought it is, to die! 
To leave the freshness of this upper sky, 
For the cold horrors of the funeral rite, 
The land of ghosts and everlasting night! 
Oh, slay me not ! the weariest life that pain, 
The fever of disgrace, the lengthened chain 
Of slavery, can impose on mortal breath, 
' Is real bliss,' to what we fear of death. 

Greek Anthology. 

But this was the complaint of a beautiful young 
damsel, whose father was about to sacrifice her, 
to appease the anger of Diana, whom he had 
offended by killing one of her stags. The 
goddess took compassion on the lady, and 


( 286 ) 

substituted a deer in her place. The following 
is more to the purpose. Antisthenes, the stoic, 
being very sick, and in great pain, cried out, 
" Can no one deliver me from these evils ? " 
Diogenes, who was with him, presenting him 
a knife, said, "This will relieve you." " I do 
not mean from my life," replied Antisthenes, 
" but from my disease." The point to which 
we should aim, and endeavour to arrive at, is, 
not to make our continuance in life an object 
of too anxious solicitude, but as Martial teaches 
"Summum nee metuas diem, nee optas," nei- 
ther to wish, nor fear, to die. " Viva la gal- 
lina, y viva con su pepita," let the hen live, 
though with the pip ; and " a living dog," we 
say, "is better than a dead lion." 

Harena sine Cake. 

Sand without lime. If too much sand or 
rubbish be used in making mortar or cement, 
it will not cohere, but crumble into dust. The 
adage may be applied to any speech or com- 
position, in which order and method have been 
neglected, where the parts have no congruity 


or connection. It was by this phrase that the 
Emperor Caligula characterised the works of 
Seneca, and not entirely without reason, Eras- 
mus observes. For though the writings of that 
great observer of human life and manners, 
abound with just and pertinent observations, 
they are frequently given in so desultory a 
manner, that it is not easy to follow and con- 
nect them together ; the same may be objected 
to the elegant, but unconnected Elegies of 
Tibullus, and still more justly, perhaps, to 
the Essays of Montaigne. 

Furemque Fur cognoscit. 
The thief knows or acknowledges his brother 
thief. Persons of similar manners, but the bad 
particularly, are fond of associating together; 
indeed when their characters are known, they 
cannot easily get other companions. Hence 
we say, 

" Tell me with whom thou goest, 
And I'll tell thee what thou doest." 

for, " Cada uno busca a su semejante,',' or 
" Chacun aime son semblable," " birds of a 
feather will still flock together/' 


Antequam incipias, consulto. 

Consider, or deliberate maturely, before you 
undertake any great work or enterprise ; after 
you have embarked in it, it may be too late. 
"The beginning of all virtue," Demosthenes 
observes, " is deliberation ; and the end and 
perfection of it, constancy." When you de- 
termine to cross the ocean, remember you. 
may have to epcounter storms and tempests, 
and before you enter on any new project, that 
it may fail. It is necessary to be prepared for 
every event, and not like the inconsiderate and 
foolish man, at every cross incident or obstacle 
you meet with, cry " who would have thought 
it !" "Things will have," Lord Verulam says, 
" their first, or second agitation ; if they be not 
tossed upon the arguments of counsel, they will 
be tossed upon the waves of fortune, and be 
full of inconstancy, doing and undoing, like the 
reeling of a drunken man. It is good to com- 
mit the beginnings of all great actions to Argus 
with his hundred eyes, and the ends to Briareus 
with his hundred hands: for the helmet of 
Pluto, which maketh the politic man to go 


( 139 ) 

invisible, is secrecy in counsel, and celerity in 
the execution." Polonius advises his son to 

" Beware 

Of entrance to a quarrel, but being in, 
Bear 't, that th' oppo&er may beware of thee." 



Page 21. 1. 16. for Crabones, read Crabroncs. 

73. 1. for and so long a, read and so a long. 

99. 2. for Invenxione, read Invenzione. 

123. 10. for capillo, vead lapillo, 

1 1. for candido, read candidus. 

137. 1. for steftb, read stesso. 

145. 14, for has, read have. 

148. 2. dele of. 

200. 25. /or bate, read bait, 

201. 4. for bated, read baited. 
225. 24. for happn, read happen- 


Printed by C. Ro worth, Bell-yard, Temple-bar. 












London: Printed liv f. Rowoith, 
Be 11-yard, Temple-bar. 



Mendacem memorem, esse oportet. 

IL faut qu'un menteur ait bonne memoire," 
a liar ought to have a good memory. When 
a transaction is related exactly as it occurred, 
there is no probability that the relater should 
at any time vary in his account. The circum- 
stance must for ever dwell in his mind, in the 
very manner he described it. But if a fictitious 
story is told, he must have a good memory to 
be able at all times to tell it in the same man- 
ner. The liar therefore has little chance that 
his fiction shall remain long undiscovered, for 
should no other circumstance lead to the de- 
tection of it, he will, by not adhering always 
to the same story, betray the imposition he has 
practised ; and it is well that it is so, as there 
is no vice that doth so cover a man with shame, 
as to be detected in telling a lie. " Clear and 

VOL. ii. r, round 

( 6 ) 

round dealing," Lord Verulam says, " is the 
honour of man's nature, while a mixture of 
falsehood, is like allay in coin of gold or silver, 
which may make the metal work better, hut it 
embaseth it." Montaigne says, very happily, 
" To accuse a man of lying, is as much as to 
say, he is a brave towards God, and a coward 
towards man." 

Qui bene conjiciet, hunc Vatem perhibeto 

Let him who conjectures best, who from 
circumstances draws the most rational con- 
clusions, be esteemed your best counsellor or 
adviser, or more literally, let him be your 
soothsayer or prophet. 

" He that conjectures least amiss, 
Of all the best of prophets is." 

Do not, like the Africans, and other illiterate 
and uncultivated people, consult astrologers, 
or diviners, with the view of learning your 
future destiny, which cannot with any cer- 
tainty be foretold. It is true, as is said of 
persons having the second sight in Scotland, 


( 7 ) 

there is sometimes- a very near, or perhaps, an 
exact coincidence between the prediction and 
the event, "Quisest enim, qui totum diem 
jaculans, non aliquando conlineat?" for, who 
shoots often, will at some time hit the mark. 
But on inquiry, it would be found, that they 
fail fifty times for once that they are right. 
But jugglers, or fortune-tellers, as they are call- 
ed, are in no small degree of estimation in this 
country, and among persons who should be 
ashamed of giving encouragement to such 
wretched impostures. Erasmus complains, that 
they were not less in vogue in his time, and 
that they were resorted to by personages of 
the highest rank. " Si fuera adevino, no mu- 
riera mesquino," if I were a conjuror, I should 
not die a beggar, the Spaniards say, which 
shews they do not want encouragement in 
that country also. Of the Spaniards, it has 
been said, that they are less wise, as the French 
are found to be more wise, more politic, at the 
least, than from their respective habits and 
manners, might be expected. 

B 2 Pannus 

( 8 ) 

Pannus lacer. 

A tattered garment, which, if a man has the 
misfortune to be obliged to appear in, it being 
what is first seen and noticed, he is usually 
rejected, without trying whether, under that 
sordid and wretched outside, there may not 
lie talents, which might make him a valuable 

" Want is the scorn of every wealthy fool, 
And wit in rags is turn'd to ridicule." 

But this might be borne, and it might perhaps 
be in some measure compensated, if the con- 
tempt in which persons so accoutred are held, 
should incite in such as have abilities, so much 
industry and frugality, as might guarantee 
them from falling into a state of indigence, 
which is not so impracticable, as it is often 
supposed to be. But when men become in- 
digent through misfortune, their distress is 
more than doubled, when they find that those 
who in their prosperity courted, now turn their 
backs upon them, and this, it is to be feared, 
is no uncommon case. 

" poverty, 

When no ill else will do 't, makes all friends fly." 


( 9 ) 

Anciently, when any thing was rejected, and 
put away with contempt, it was said to be 
thrown away like a worn out and tattered 
garment. " Did you observe, how he turned 
up his nose at it?" is our more common phrase, 
when any thing is refused with disdain. 

Chius Dominum emit 

The Chians purchased for themselves mas- 
ters. When their country was conquered by 
Mithridates, they were delivered, bound with 
chains, to their slaves,/ whom they had pur- 
chased, to be by them transported to Colchis. 
The adage was used when any one by mis- 
management had brought upon himself any 
severe calamity. 

Multce Manus Onus levius reddunt. 

"Many hands make light work." This is 
too obvious to need being explained. Of the 
same kind are, " Two heads are better than, 
one, or why do folks marry?" and "in a mul- 
titude of counsellors, there is safety." But the 
B 3 oppo- 

opposite to this is no less true, and we say, 
" too many cooks spoil the broth," and " keep 
no more cats than catch mice;"' we know also 
that where too many men are employed in the 
same business, instead of helping, they often- 
times hinder each other. 

Spem Pretio ernere. 

Paying a high price for some future and in- 
cidental advantage. " Parting with the sub- 
stance for a shadow." The adage advises not 
to part with what we actually possess, upon the 
distant prospect of some doubtful or uncer- 
tain profit ; " e meglio aver hoggi un uovo, 
che dimana una gallina," better an egg to-day 
than a hen to-morrow, or " a bird in the hand 
is worth two in the bush." It would be worse 
than madness in any one in possession of a 
competence, or exercising successfully any 
business or profession to hazard all in pursuit 
of some new scheme, which however promis- 
ing in appearance, might fail and_involve him 
in ruin : and yet of this folly there are few 
but are acquainted with some victims. This, 


( 11 ) 

the Spaniards say, is " yr por lana, y bolver 
tresquilado," going for wool, and returning 
home shorn. How many young men again, 
spend whole years of their invaluable time, in 
cultivating the friendship of some great man 
in the hope of obtaining preferment, and are 
only at length weaned from the pursuit, in 
the course of which they have submitted to 
all those insults and mortifications incident to 
a state of dependence, by rinding other, per- 
haps less obsequious clients, preferred to the 
office which had been pointed out to them as 
the reward of their servitude : awaked, at 
length, from their dream of prosperity, they 
find the loss of the expected office the smallest 
part of their misery. They have not only neg- 
lected to improve the little fortune they pos- 
sessed, but have suffered it to slip completely 
away, or have so reduced it as not to have a 
sufficiency left for their subsistence ; in the 
meantime they have contracted habits of idle- 
ness, which render it impossible for them to 
search out means of recovering what they have 
lost : this is buying hope at a dreadfully high 
price indeed ! The adage also alludes to a 
B 4 custom, 

custom, common, we are told, among the an- 
cients, and which has descended to the pre- 
sent times, of purchasing the produce of an 
orchard while the trees were only in blossom, 
or of a field of corn as soon -as the seed was 
committed to the ground, at stipulated prices. 
This species of gaming was carried so far, 
that it was not unusual to buy a draught of 
fishes, or so many as should be taken at one 
cast of a net; or all the game that should be 
taken in one day's hunting : and laws, we are 
told, were framed to regulate this kind of 

" Lord Bacon, being in York-house garden, 
looking on fishers as they were throwing their 
net, asked them what they would take for their 
draught; they answered so much, his lordship 
would offer them only so much ; they drew 
up their net, and in it were only two or three 
little fishes ; his lordship then told them, it 
had been better for them to have taken his 
offer ; they replied, they hoped to have had a 
better draught; but, said his lordship, " hope 
is a good breakfast, but a bad supper." Au- 
brey's Manuscripts. 


( 13 > 

JEgroto dum Anima est Spes est. 

" While there is life, there is hope," and 
" there is life in a muscle." We should not 
give up our exertions too early ; what is dif- 
ficult, is not therefore to be deemed impossi- 
ble, as persons apparently at the point of death 
are sometimes found to recover; and a turn not 
unfrequently takes place in our affairs, and we 
are rescued from difficulties that seemed at 
one time hopeless and irremediable. 

Tempus omnia revelai. 

Time brings all things to light. Truth has 
therefore been called the daughter of Time, or 
as the Spaniards say, of God, " la verdad es 
hija de Dios;" the wicked man hence knows 
no peace, but lives in perpetual fear that time, 
the great revealer of secrets, should tear off 
the veil that hides his crimes and shew him in 
his true colours. But time also overturns and 
destroys every thing, and takes away even the 
memory of them. Hence we have 


( 14 ) 

Tempus edax Rerum. 

Which cannot be better exemplified than 
by the following lines : 

" Time lays his hand 

On pyramids of brass, and ruins quite 
What all the fond artificers did think 
Immortal workmanship. He sends his worms 
To books, to old records, and they devour 
Th' inscriptions ; he loves ingratitude, 
For he destroys the memory of man." 

Quo semel est iinbuta recens, servabit Odorem 
Testa diu. 

Vessels will for a long time preserve the scent 
of the liquor first put into them, or with which 
they were first impregnated. This observa- 
tion is very happily introduced by Horace, to 
shew the necessity of instilling early good 
principles into the minds of young people ; 
" maxima debetur pueris reverentia :" and 

" Nil dictu foedum visuve hcec limina tangat 
Intra quae puer est." 

we should reverence youth ; that is, we should 


take care that nothing be said or done in 
their presence offensive to good morals, that 
we may not suffer the cruel reflection of hav- 
ing led them into vice by our example. 

" Sincerum est nisi vas, quodcunque infundis acescit." 

For as, unless the vessel is kept clean and 
untainted, whatever is put into it will be 
spoiled : if the mind be corrupted when young, 
it will afterwards reject the most salutary pre- 

Philip of Macedon thought a good educa- 
tion of so much importance, that next to the 
pleasure he experienced in having a son to 
whom he might leave his empire, he esteemed 
that of his being born at a time when he was 
able to procure for him so excellent a precep- 
tor as Aristotle; under whose tuition he placed 
him as soon as he was of an age to receive 
his instruction. " It would be well," Roger 
Ascham says, " that we should adopt the man- 
ners of the Persians, whose children to the 
age of twenty-one years were brought up in 
learning and exercises of labour, and that in 
such places, where they should neither see 


( IS ) 

that was uncomely, nor hear that was unho- 

Oculus dexter mlhi sulit. 

" My right eye itches," I shall see whom I 
have long wished for; and, 

" Num vobis tinniebant aures, Parmeno?" 

Did not your ears tingle ? for your mistress 
was talking of you. We also say, " my face 
flushes," some one is talking of me ; and " my 
elbow itches," I shall be kissed by a fool. 
Plautus has many similar phrases in his come- 
dies ; whence we learn, that these supersti- 
tious fancies have prevailed among the com- 
mon people in all ages. 

Sequitur Ver Hyemem. 

The spring follows the winter, sunshine 
succeeds to rain : " apres ce tems-ci il en 
viendra un autre," after this season will come 
another and a different one. This, and other si- 
milar phrases have been used both by ancients 


( 17 ) 

and moderns, to encourage men to bear their 
troubles with constancy, by the consolatory 
reflection that they cannot last forever. For 
though it be true, as the Spaniard notices, 
" en cada sendero, ay su atolledera," that in 
every road there are sloughs in some part of 
it, when these are passed the rest of the way, 
may be smooth and level. " It is a long lane," 
we say, " that has no end," and " when things 
are at the worst they will mend;" for " etiani 
mala fortuna suas habet levitates," even ill- 
fortune is changeable and will not last forever; 
but prosperity is probably still more faithless 
than adversity : when we have attained the 
summit of our wishes, we may be doomed to 
suffer an early reverse, and our fall will be 
the more severe, the greater the eminence 
from which we are precipitated. " Di gran 
subida gran caicla," from a great height a 
great fall, and " after sweet meat comes sour 

" The prosperous man to-day puts forth 

The tender leaves of hope, to-morrow blossoms, 
And bears his blushing honours thick upon him : 
The third day comes a frost, a killing frost ; 
And when he thinks, good easy man, full surely 


( 18 ) 

His greatness is a ripening, nips his root. 
And then he falls as I do." 

Woohey's Speech in King Henry VIII. 

Tanguam Ungues Digitosque suos. 

The subject is as familiar and as well known 
to me, as are my fingers ; to be perfectly 
conversant with a business, or to have it, as 
we say, " at our fingers' ends." 

Rem Acu tetigisti. 

"You have hit the matter to a4iair," or 
" the nail on the head," that is, you are per- 
fectly right in your conjecture. 

Dies adimit JEgritudinem. 

Time cures the greatest afflictions. There is 
no trouble, however pungent, which time has 
not the power of softening or removing. It is 
also esteemed to have no small influence in 

curing diseases affecting the body. 

" Medi- 

( 19 ) 

" Medicus dedit qui temporis morbo raoram, 

Is plus remedii quam cutis sector dedit." 


The physician who allows the disease to sub- 
sicle gradually, is more successful than he who 
has immediate recourse to rough and violent 
remedies, which is not unlike the following, 
" El tiempo cura el enfermo, que no el un- 
guento," it is time, and not medicine that 
cures the disease. The Spaniards do not ap- 
pear to have had much reverence either for 
medicines, or for the dispensers of them. " Si 
tienes medico amigo, quitale la gorra, y em- 
bialo a casa de tu enemigo," if you have a 
physician for your friend, make your bow to 
him, and send him to your enemy, as the surest 
way to get rid of him. Time also brings things 
to perfection. " Col tempo et la paglia si ma- 
turano mespoli," time and straw make med- 
lars ripe. 

Quid nisi Victis Dolor. 

What but misery to the conquered; and 
" vae victis !" woe to the conquered ! was the 
cruel taunt of Brennus to the Romans, com- 

( 20 ) 

plaining that he exacted more than they had 
stipulated to pay, as a ransom for their city; 
reproaching them, perhaps, that they had not 
made so strenuous a defence as they ought to 
have done, before they capitulated. It should 
be sounded in the ears of the careless, the in- 
dolent, arid the profligate, in short, of all who, 
having nothing but their genius or their in- 
dustry to depend upon for their support, pass 
their time in sloth and inactivity; or who dis- 
sipate the property left them by their parents, 
in the foolish, or perhaps criminal indulgence 
of their passions. What pleasure, or what 
comforts, are to be purchased by poverty, 
and what are they to expect, when they have 
reduced themselves to a state of indigence, 
but the neglect of those who would have been 
their friends, or the cold consolation of pity ? 
How little relief distress may expect from pity, 
the following very just observations of Gold- 
smith shew : "Pity and friendship are passions 
incompatible with each other; and it is impos- 
sible that both can reside in any breast, for 
the smallest space of time, without impairing 
each other. Friendship is made up of esteem 
'w and 

( 21 ) 

and pleasure, but pity is composed of sorrow 
and contempt. In fact, "he adds, "pity, though 
it may often relieve, is but at best a short lived 
passion, and seldom affords distress more than 
a transitory assistance," which is consonant to 
the following observation of Dryden, 

"pity only with new objects stays, 

But with the tedious sight of woe decays." 

Vino vendibili suspensd Hedera nihil Opus. 

" Good wine needs no bush." Good actions 
are their own interpreters, they need no rhe- 
toric to adorn them. The phrase derives its 
origin from a custom among vintners, of 
hanging out the representation of an ivy bush, 
as an indication that they sell wine; a custom 
common in Germany, in the time of Erasmus, 
and probably much earlier. It is still continued 
among us ; many of the principal inns in this 
kingdom, both in town and country, being 
known by the sign of the bush. While signs 
were in fashion, Bacchus astride on his tun, 
and ample bunches of grapes, with their hand- 
some foliage, were also very general designa- 

VOL. ir, c ttons 

tions of the good liquor that was to be had 
within. The proverb is applicable to persons 
too earnest in their commendation of any ar- 
ticles they are desirous of selling. The Spa- 
niards therefore say, *' El vino que es bueno, 
no ha menestcr pregonero," the wine that is 
good needs no trumpeter. 

The ivy is said to be an antidote to the in- 
toxicating power of wine, hence Bacchus is 
always painted with a wreath of ivy on his 
head, and it may be that it was on account of 
this supposed property, that in old times a 
bush of ivy was chosen, in preference to any 
other, by the vintners. The proverb has been 
pretty generally adopted. " Al buon vino," 
the Italians say, " non bisogna frasca," and 
the French, " Le bon vin n'a point besoin de 
buchcron." Is this the origin of the vulgar 

o o 

term "Bosky," applied to persons who are 
tipsy, or drunk, viz. he has been under the 
bush? The Scotch, who are accustomed to fix 
a bunch of hay against houses where ale is 
sold, say, "Good ale needs no whisp." 


( 23 ) 

Anus Simla, serd quidem. 

The old ape is taken at length. This was 
said, when any one, who for a long time, by 
craft and cunning, had succeeded in plunder- 
ing his neighbours, was at last taken, and 
condemned to suffer the punishment due to 
his crimes. Our English proverb has it, "The; 
old fox is caught at last." 

Spartam nactus es hanc orna. 

Endeavour to acquit yourself well in what- 
ever station or condition of life your lot may 
happen to be cast 

" Honour and shame from no conditions rise, 
Act well your part, there all the honour lies." 

The adage is of general application. Princes, 
nobles, bishops, lawyers, soldiers, and the 
meanest individuals, have each of them their 
distinct province; let them fill them worthily. 

" Each might his several province well command, 
Would all but stoop to what they understand." 

" England expects that every man will do 
his duty," was the animated speech of Lord 

c 2 Nelson 

( 24 ) 

Nelson at the battle of Trafalgar, where that 
hero unfortunately fell ; or not, perhaps, un- 
fortunately for himself, as it was in the midst 
of victory, and crowned with glory. Had he 
died immediately after his unsuccessful at- 
tempt on the coast of France, or on his expe- 
dition to Denmark, he would have left his 
fame somewhat diminished, which by his last 
brilliant action was again mounted to the stars ; 
for the victory at the Nile was not less bril- 
liant than that off Trafalgar. Either of them 
\vould have been sufficient to immortalise his 

Ac k guoi'is Ligno 1\ fer cur ius fiat. 

A statue of Mercury may not be made from 
every kind of wood. All dispositions and 
capacities are not adapted to the higher walks 
of literature. It is incumbent on parents to 
educate their children, but they should give 
them such instruction, as is suited to their 
talents. Artificers are careful to make choice 
of materials fit for the work they have in hand, 
whether metal, stone, or wood ; using the 


coarser sort for rough and common articles, the, 
finer for those that require to be more exqui- 
sitely finished. " You cannot make," we say, 
"a silken purse of a sow's ear," or " a horn of 
a pig's tail," or " a good coat," the Spaniards 
say, " of coarse or bad wool." " De ruyn paiio 
nunca buen sayo." 

Ne Gladium tollas Mulier. 
Women should not attempt to wield a sword, 
for which they are incompetent. Employ in 
every business means adapted and adequate 
to the purpose; also take care not to irritate 
any one whom you are not able to stand 
against, or oppose successfully. Brutus ob- 
served, that Cicero should not have railed 
against, and provoked Marc Anthony, who 
was much more powerful than himself. In 
the end, this imprudence cost Cicero his life. 
What, however, shall we say of those heroines, 
Judith in sacred, and Joan of Arc in modern 
history, or of the Amazons, who wielded this 
forbidden weapon with such advantage against 
their enemies, in defiance of tlus adage? 

c 3 .n- 

Exiguum Malum, ingens Eonum. 

" III luck is good for something." From a 
small evil, to extract a considerable advantage, 
is the property of a sound and prudent mind. It 
is next to profiting by the errors and mischances 
of others, to take warning by some check we 
may meet with in our progress, and thence to 
alter our course. " El hombre mancebo perdi- 
endo gana seso," a young man by losing, gains 
knowledge. If persons, who are living more 
expensively than their income permits, would 
be wanted by the first difficulty or disgrace 
they suffer, and would institute modes of liv- 
ing more suitable to their circumstances, they 
would soonrecoverwhat by their improvidence 
they had wasted. But pride, a fear of shewing 
to their companions they are not so wealthy as 
they had boasted, or had appeared to be, pre- 
vents their following this salutary counsel, 
and they go on until their fall becomes in- 
evitable. " Si quid feceris honestum cum la- 
bore, labor abit, honestum manet Si quid 
feceris turpe cum voluptate, voluptas abit, 
turpitude manet," which may be thus ren- 
dered : 

( 27 ) 

dered : if by labour and difficulty you have 
procured to yourself an advantage, the benefit 
will remain, when the labour with which it 
was acquired will be forgotten. But if in pur- 
suit of pleasure you have degraded yourself, 
the disgrace will remain, while no traces of 
the pleasure will be retained in your memory. 

Ipse semet canit. 

" Is your trumpeter dead, that you arc 
obliged to praise yourself?" This may be con- 
sidered as a caution against vain blasting. 
Act so as to be deserving of commendation ; 
and though you should not meet with all the 
applause you may deserve, you will have the 
testimony of your own mind, which will be 
abundantly satisfactory. Hear, O ye Vene- 
tians, and I will tell ye which is the best thin 2; 

' / O 

in the world : " To contemn it." Sebastian 
Foscarius, sometime Duke of Venice, ordered 
this to be inscribed on his tomb. 

Telpsiim non alens, Canes alls. 
Not having sufficient for your own support, 
c 4 do 

( 28 ) 

do you pretend to keep dogs ? This was used 
to be applied to persons whose income, insuf- 
ficient to supply them with necessaries, was 
laid out in superfluities ; in keeping servants 
and horses, or in an ostentatious use of gaudy 
clothes, furniture, or other articles of luxury, 
unbecoming th'eir circumstances. " Los que 
cabras no tienen, y cabritos venden, de donde 
lo vienen ?" those who, having no goats, yet 
sell kids, whence do they get them ? is said by 
the Spaniards, of persons who, having no es- 
tates, qr known income, yet contrive to live at 
a great expense. 

Cantilenam eandem cams. 

To be always singing the same tune, or tell- 
ing the same stories, which, though at the first 
they might be interesting and pleasant, at 
length become, by repetition, tiresome and 
disgusting. " Dieu nous garde d'un horn me 
qui n'a qu'une affaire;" God keep us, the 
French say, from a man who is only acquaint- 
ed with one subject, on which he is capable of 
conversing; he will introduce it on all occa- 

sions, though it have no affinity to the subject 
which the company are discussing. "He will 
lug it in by the neck and shoulders." 

Ignavis semper Ferice sunt. 

To the indolent every day is a holiday, or 
clay of rest. Erasmus has taken occasion, in 
the explication of this sentence, to shew the 
mischiefs incurred by the increasing number 
of festivals or holidays, enjoined by the church. 
They were intended, he observes, as days of 
necessary relaxation for the labouring poor, 
but were too frequently passed by them in 
the grossest debauchery. The abolishing the 
greater part of these holidays, may be esteem- 
ed, as not the smallest of the many advantages 
produced to this country by the Reformation. 

Ne Verb a pro Farina. 

" Fair words butter no parsnips." Though 
we may for a time be satisfied with kind 
speeches, and fair promises, yet as we cannot 


( 30 ) 

take them to the market, or they will not pass 
there, the satisfaction derived from them will 
be but short-lived, and when we find them 
totally unproductive, and that they were 
merely unmeaning expletives, our resentment 
will be in proportion to the dependence we 
had placed on them, and to the time we have 
lost in the vain expectation of some promised 

Timidi nunquam statuerunt Trophceum. 
Timid persons and such as are not pos- 
sessed of personal courage, must not expect to 
be honoured with a triumph, which is only ac- 
corded to those who have by their valour ob- 
tained some signal victory. " Qui a peur de 
feuilles ne doit aller au bois," " he that is 
afraid of leaves, must not go into a wood/' 
Persons of timid dispositions should not en- 
gage in hazardous undertakings, or attempt 
what can only be achieved by courage and 
prowess ; " al hombre osado, la fortuna da la 
mano," " fortune favours the bold," " faint 
heart never won fair lady," and " none but 
the brave deserve the fair !" 


( 31 ) 
Aliorum Medicus, ipse Ulcerlbus scales. 

" Who boast of curing poor and rich, 
Yet are themselves all over itch.'* 

Physicians pretending to cure the diseases of 
others, and are themselves loaded with com- 
plaints, are the immediate objects of the cen- 
sure contained in this adage ; but it may also 
be applied to persons railing against vices to 
which they are themselves addicted. Persons 
whose office it is instruct the people in the 
duties of morality and religion, should consi- 
der how much their admonitions will lose of 
their weight and efficacy if their conduct is 
not in a great degree, at the least, consonant 
to their doctrine; if they cannot entirely re- 
frain from vice, they should be extremely 
careful to conceal their deviations from the 
precepts they mean to inculcate, lest their ex- 
ample should be more powerful than their lec- 

Ne Jfcsopum quidem trivit. 
He has not been taught even the fables of 

, was used to be said of persons totally 
illiterate ; whose education has been so neg- 
lected, that they had not been initiated in the 
rudiments of literature ; " he has not read his 
horn-book or his primer," or "does not know 
his alphabet," we say on similar occasions. 
The horn-book, it is known, is a piece of 
board six or seven inches long and four or 
five broad, on which is pasted a strip of paper 
containing the alphabet in capital and small 
letters, covered with a plate of transparent 
horn, to guard it from the fingers of the young 
subjects, to whose use it is dedicated : this 
description may seem superfluous at present, 
but horn-books are now so little used, that, it 
is probable, should the name of the contrivance 
continue, the form and fashion of it will in a 
short time be lost. To the same purport is 

Neque nature, neque Literas. 

He has neither been taught to read nor to 
swim, two things which the Grecians and Ro- 
mans were careful their children should be in- 
structed in early ; and which it was held to 
be disgraceful not to have learned, 


( S3 ) 

Non est mihi cornea Fibra. 

I am not made of horn, of brass, of iron, or 
such like impenetrable stuff, as to be so totally 
void of sense or proper feeling, that I should 
hear unmoved a tale of so much distress ; or 
so difficult of persuasion, that I should not 
listen to so reasonable a request. 

Non est Remedium adversus Sycophants 

There is no remedy against the tongue of 
the sycophant, who, by pretended concern for 
your interest, worm themselves into your con- 
fidence and get acquainted with your most 
intimate concerns. When men who are in- 
different to you affect a more than ordinary 
regard for your interest, you should be cau- 
tious how you converse with them ; 
" Halaga la cola el can 

Non por ti, sino por el pan," 

the dog wags his tail not for you but for 
your bread. It might be well if the sycophant 
were content with pillaging, but more usu- 
ally they flatter only to betray you ; such men 


are said, " halagar con la cola, y morder con 
la boca," to bite while they fawn upon you 
and, if they are as crafty as they are malevo- 
lent, you will not discover the villany of their 
dispositions until they have done you some 
irremediable mischief; until they have alie- 
nated the minds of your friends, or raised such 
dissensions in your family as nothing but 
death will extinguish. When lago saw that 
he had succeeded in exciting in Othello a sus- 
picion of the incontinence of Desdemona, he 
says, exulting in the success of his villany, 

" Not poppy, nor mandragore, 

Nor all the drowsy syrups of the world, 
Shall ever medicine thee to that sweet sleep 
Which thou ow'dst yesterday." 

The ancients supposed that there were ma- 
gic rings which had the power of defending 
those who wore them from certain diseases, 
inflicted, as they imagined, by inchantment 
or witchcraft, but even these were insufficient 
to protect them from the tongue of the slan- 


Dent em Dente rodere. 

It is one tooth biting another, was used to 
be said to any one attempting to hurt what 
was out of his reach, and could not be af- 
fected by him : or affronting one who could 
return the insult with interest; or having a 
contest with persons capable of doing him 
more mischief than he could do them. It has 
the same sense as, " verberare lapidem," beat- 
ing a stone; " do not shew your teeth," we 
say, "when you cannot bite." The adage 
probably took its rise from the fable of the 
serpent gnawing a file, which it met with in a 
smith's shop, by which it made its own gums 
bleed but without hurting the file. 

Frustra Herculi. 

That is, should any one call Hercules a 
coward, who would listen to him ? .The- adage 
was applied to anyone speaking ill of persons of 
known and approved integrity and character. 
When Cato, whose worth had been often tried, 


( 36 ) 

was accused of avarice ; this, Plutarch said, 
was as if any one should reproach Hercules 
with want of courage. 

Ne in Neroum erumpat. 

The string may break; this was said to per- 
sons who, emboldened by success, were per- 
petually engaging in new exploits : such per- 
sons were advised by this apothegm to desist, 
they had done enough to shew their skill or 
courage ; a reverse might happen, or by one 
wrong step they might lose all the honour or 
emolument they had gained. " The pitcher 
that goes often to the well returns broken at 

The adage takes its rise from bowmen who, 
by overstraining the string, at length occa- 
sion it to break, not without danger to them- 

Pluris est oculatus Testis unus, quam auriti 

Better one eye-witness than ten who only 


( 37 ) 

know a thing from hearsay ; or, what we see 
with our own eyes, is rather to be believed 
than what we learn only from report, for " ver y 
creer," " seeing is believing," and " ojos que 
no ven, coracon que no llora," " what the eye 
doth not see, the heart doth not rue." 

In caducum Parietem indinare. 

Leaning on a broken staff, which cannot 
support you, or " on a bruised reed which 
will pierce your hand and wound you ;" lite- 
rally upon a weak and tottering wall; meta- 
phorically, trusting to a false friend who will 
betray you, or to one who is incapable of per- 
forming what he promises, or of furnishing the 
assistance which he undertook to afford you. 

Qui jacet in Terra, non hahet undc cadat. 

He who is at the bottom can fall no lower. 
When plunged into the gulph of poverty and 
misery all fear of further distress is over, no 
change can take place but it must be for the 
better; and so unsettled are all sublunary 

VOL. LI. D thins 

things that a change may always be expected, 
or time and use will make the greatest trouble 
tolerable. Hope and patience are two sove- 
reign remedies, affording the softest cushion 
to lean on in adversity. " Grata superveniet 
quae non sperabitur hora," a day of relief 
beyond expectation may come, and turn a 
lowering morning to a fair afternoon ; or at the 
worst, death will at length put an end to our 
misery, and when a traveller arrives at the end 
of his journey, he soon forgets the hardships 
and difficulties he met with on the road. It 
was an observation of Seneca, that " bona 
re rum secundarum sunt optabilia, adversarum 
mirabilia," the good things which belong to 
prosperity, are to be wished ; but the good 
things that belong to adversity are to be ad- 
mired. Queen Catherine, who was repudiated 
by Henry the Eighth, used to say, that " she 
would not willingly endure the extremity of 
either fortune ; but if it were so that of ne- 
cessity she must undergo the one, she would 
be in adversity, because comfort was never 
wanting in that state, but still counsel and 
self-government were defective in the other." 


( 39 ) 

" If you have acquired," Plutarch says, " a 
command over your passions, and are become 
wise and virtuous, you will be pleased with 
wealth, for enabling you to be useful to many; 
with poverty, for not having much to care 
for; with fame, for procuring you honour; 
and with obscurity, for keeping you from be- 
ing envied." 

Verecundia inutilis Viro egenti. 

Bashfulness is of no use to a man in want. 
The adage teaches that persons liberally edu- 
cated but in mean circumstances, should not 
refuse to undertake offices, though beneath 
them, which might be executed without of- 
fending against any moral or religious duty. 
This many do, not from their objection to 
the labour, but from being ashamed to appear 
to their friends, or to the world in a degraded 
situation ; they can contemn pleasure, and 
bear pain or grief with firmness, but reproach 
and obloquy breaks and overwhelms them. 
It is the disgrace more than the confinement 
that makes a prison hateful. When Johnson 
D 2 found 

( 40 ) 

found a pair of shoes placed at his door by 
one of his fellow students, actuated by false 
shame or by pride, he threw them, with great 
indignation, out of the window ; though his 
own were so much worn as not to keep his feet 
from the stones. But bashfulness or false 
modesty is more than useless also, when it 
deters men from laying open their circum- 
stances to their friends, who both might and 
would, by their advice or otherwise, relieve 
them, until, by delay, they are become so in- 
volved that nothing can prevent their fall : or 
when it leads them to conceal their bodily com- 
plaints, which not unfrequently happens, from 
the physician or surgeon, until they no longer 
admit of being cured. 

Sustine ct abstine. 

Bear and forbear, a phrase frequently used 
by Kpictetus, as embracing almost the whole 
that philosophy or human reason can teach us- 
Of this Epictetus was a memorable example, 
no man bearing the evils of life with more 
constancy or less coveting its enjoyments. 


( 41 ) 

His master Epaphroclitus, for he was a slave 
in the early part of his life, diverting himself 
with striking his leg with a large stick, he 
told him, that if he continued to give such 
heavy strokes he would hreak the hone; 
which happening as he had foretold, all that 
he said on the occasion was, u did not I tell 
you, you would break my leg." When after- 
wards he had obtained his liberty and was 
much followed as a teacher of philosophy, he 
still lived in the plainest and simplest man- 
ner ; his house or cottage had no door, and 
the little furniture it contained was of the 
meanest kind. When an iron lamp by which 
he used to study, was stolen, he said, " I shall 
deceive the thief if he should come again, as 
he will only find an earthen one." This 
earthen lamp, Lucian tells us, was sold for 
three thousand drachmas or groats, 75 
of our money. He is said to have lived to 
his ninety-sixth year. The Mexicans, with- 
out being beholden to the tenets of philoso- 
phy, have learnt from experience the neces- 
sity of undergoing trouble ; they say to their 
children on being born, " thou art come into 
D 3 the 

( 42 ) 

the world, child, to endure ; suffer, therefore, 
and be silent. 

Naturam expellas Furca tamen usque 

Which may be aptly enough rendered by 
our English proverb, " what is bred in the 
bone, will never get out of the flesh." " Lu- 
pus pilum mutat, non mentem," it is easier 
for the wolf to change his coat than his dispo- 
sition : habits are with difficulty changed, and 
with greater difficulty if of such long conti- 
nuance as to become a second nature. As 
the bough of a tree drawn from its natural 
course, recoils and returns to its old position as 
soon as the force by which it had been restrained 
is removed ; so do we return to old habits as 
soon as the motives, whether interest or fear, 
which had induced us to quit them, are done 
away : the cat that had been transformed into 
a fine lady, on seeing a mouse, forgetting the 
decorum required by her new form, sprung 
from the table where she was sitting to seize 
on her prey. " Vizio di natura dura fino alia 


( 43 ) 

sepoltura," the vice that is born with us or is 
become natural to us, accompanies us to the 
grave. A rich miser being at the point of death, 
his confessor placed before him a large ^silver 
crucifix, and was about to begin an exhorta- 
tion, when the usurer, fixing his eyes on the 
crucifix, said, " I cannot., sir, lend you much 
upon this." 

See the camel is dancing, may be said, 
when we see a very austere person laughing, 
or any one doing what is contrary to his usual 
habit or disposition. 

Optimum Condimentum Fames. 

" Appetite non vuol salza," " hunger is the 
best sauce." This apothegm was frequently 
in the mouth of Socrates deriding his volup- 
tuous countrymen, whose tables were fur- 
nished with every species of luxury, and who 
used a variety of provocatives to stir up an 
appetite, which might be so much better ex- 
cited, he told them, at so easy a rate. 

D 4 Oestro 

(44 ) 

Oestro percitus. 

This was said of persons who were seized 
with a sudden commotion or disturbance ot the 
mind, as poets by the inspiration of the Muses, 
from some resemblance in their conduct, 
as it was supposed, to cattle that had been 
bitten by the oestrum or gad-fly. It is known 
that cattle have such extreme horror of this 
insect, that on only hearing the noise it makes 
when flying, they run about the fields as if 
they were mad. The adage was also used 
when any one was seen to apply himself in- 
tensely to any kind of business, or study. 
" But what fly," Friar John says, " has struck 
Panurge, that he is of late become so hard a 
student ? " " What maggot," we say, " has he 
got in his head." 

Tanquam Argivum Clypeum abstulerit, it a 

He is as proud of the transaction, as if he 
had despoiled a Grecian warrior of his shield. 
The Greeks and Romans defended their shields 


( 45 ) 

with the greatest pertinacity, it being held in 
the highest degree dishonourable to suffer 
them to be taken from them. The adage was 
used to be applied to persons boasting of some 
insignificant exploit, and magnifying it, as if 
they had saved a friend, or their country from 

Frustra habet, qui non utitur. 

It is in vain that he possesses that of which 
he makes no use. Of what use are horses or 
carriages to persons who never go abroad, of 
wit or knowledge to those who do not employ 
them in the management of their affairs, or of 
money to the avaricious, who are averse to, or 
afraid of spending it, even for necessary sus- 

E tardigradis Asinis Equus non prodiit. 

The horse is not the progeny of the slow 
paced ass, the sheep of the lion. We do not 
easily believe a dull and stupid man to be the 
son of an acute, sensible and ingenious parent; 

a coward, 

( 46 ) 

a coward, of a brave and spirited, or a de- 
bauched and worthless man, to be the progeny 
of a good and worthy sire; and yet these ano- 
malies not ^infrequently occur. 

Fames et Mora Eilem in Nasum conchint. 

Hunger, if not speedily satisfied, or any un- 
seasonable delay in obtaining what we ear- 
nestly desire, excites the bile in the nostrils. 
To raise or heat the bile, is used metaphorically 
for inflaming the passions; and as some men, 
and many animals, are observed to inflate or 
blow out their nostrils when angry, it is said 
to excite the bile in that organ. The bull, 
when enraged, is described as breathing fire 
from his nostrils, and of the horse it is said, 
"the glory of his nostrils is terrible." The 
impatience with which we support delay in 
gratifying our expectation is beautifully paint- 
ed by Solomon in the following : " Hope de- 
ferred, maketh the heart sick, but when it is 
accomplished, it is a tree of life." 


( 47 ) 

Tuum tlbi narro Somnium, 

May be said to any one pretending an inti- 
mate acquaintance with the private concerns 
of another; and I will tell you the subject of 
your last night's dream. 

Qui Nucleum esse vult, Nucem frangat oportet. 

" Qui veut manger de noyau, qu'il casse la 
noix," he that would eat the kernel, must 
break the shell; and, "He that will not work, 
must not expect to eat." " No hay dulzura, 
sin sudor," no sweet, without sweat. " No hay 
ganancia, sin fatiga," no gains, without pains; 
and " El que trabaja y madra, hila oro," he 
who labours and strives, spins gold. This 
rule is applicable to persons in every station, 
the labour only varies in kind, but all must 
perform a part. Providence has ordained that 
every thing necessary to our subsistence, as 
well as those which custom or habit have made 
so to our comfort, as apparel, furniture, houses, 
should only be obtained by labour and exer- 
tion. To this law the wealthy, and those born 


( 43 ) 

to high rank and distinction, are equally sub- 
jected with the poor. As the earth will not 
produce such a portion of food as is necessary 
for the support of its numerous inhabitants, 
unless it be cultivated, the labour of perform- 
ing which, is usually the lot of the poor; so 
neither can men be rendered fit to manage 
large possessions, or fill high stations, unless 
their minds be well stored with knowledge, 
which is not to be acquired without equal care 
and diligence. 

" The chiefest action for a man of spirit, 

Is never to be out of action ; \ve should think 
The soul was never put into the body, 
AVhich has so many rare and curious pieces 
Of mathematical morion, to stand still. 
Virtue is ever sowing of her seeds, 
In the trenches for the soldier ; in wakeful study 
For the scholar; in the furrows of the sea 
For men of that profession ; of all which 
Arises, and springs up honour." 

Juxta Fluviitm Puteumfodit. 

It is digging a well in the neighbourhood 
f a river, may be said to persons doing any 


( 49 ) 

thing perfectly preposterous, and useless, as 
giving money, books, or any other articles, to 
persons who have of them already, more than 
they have opportunity or inclination to use. 

Beneficium accipere est Libertatem vendere. 

He that accepts a favour, forfeits his liberty. 
By receiving obligations, particularly if from 
persons of bad morals, you are precluded the 
liberty of censuring vices so freely as you 
might be disposed, or as the subject you are 
treating might require, especially those vices 
of which you know. them to be guilty; and in 
public dissensions, you are restrained from 
maintaining your own opinion, unless it ac- 
cords with that of your patron. Erasmus, 
who manifestly held the same opinions on 
many points of religion, as were taught by 
Luther and his followers, was yet restrained 
from openly espousing them, as he received 
nearly the whole of his income, from persons 
of the Romish persuasion. " Fille qui prend," 
the French sa}', "son corps vend." The maid 
who takes presents, has deprived herself of the 


( 50 ) 

power of saying "no," or must permit liberties 
to be taken with her, which she would other- 
wise resist. " Springes to catch woodcocks," 
says the sententious Polonius, cautioning his 
daughter against giving credit to Hamlet's 
promises and presents. 

Furari Litorts Arenas. 

It is stealing sand from the sea shore, may be 
said to persons taking home with them, and 
prizing things of no value, and which are 
neglected and daily trodden under our feet. 

Pulverem Oculis ejfundere. 

" Jetter de la poudre aux yeux de quelqu' 
un," throwing dust into the eyes of any one, 
that he may not see what is going on before 
him. The adage is applicable to any one at- 
tempting to make a business, in itself obvious, 
obscure and difficult. A useful stratagem in 
war, where it can be effected, is to put an 
army into such a position, that in marching 
up to the enemy, the dust may be driven to 


their faces, and from this, the adage is sup- 
posed to have taken its origin. Giving a bribe 
with the view of obtaining an unjust decision 
in any business, is also called throwing dust 
into the eyes of the party. 

Oderint modo metuant. 

Let them hate me, so they do but fear me. 
But he of whom many are afraid, ought to be 
afraid of many, as was exemplified in the case 
of the Emperor Tiberius, who had this saying 
frequent in his mouth. He lived to be univer- 
sally feared and execrated, and knowing what 
a host of enemies he had created by his cruel- 
ties and lust, he found it necessary to go into 
a sort of banishment, in the island of Caprea, 
where he drew out a miserable existence, 
alarmed at every noise, and fancying he saw 
a dagger in the hand of every one who ap- 
proached him. The adage was also used to be 
applied to persons, whose sole pleasure or satis- 
faction centered in their wealth. Call me what 
you will, such men would say, I please myself 
with the knowledge that I am rich. 

" Populus 

-" Populus me sibilat, at mihi plaudo 

Ipse domi, simulac nummos contemplor in area." 

Caput Artis esf, decere quod facias. 

It is the perfection of art or of management 
that every one should conform himself to his 
circumstances and situation in life, that the 
rich and <n-eat should not descend to the 


manners of the poor, nor the poor emulate 
those of the rich ; that the aged should not 
mix in the sports and amusements of the 
young, nor the young imitate the gravity of 
those advanced in years. 

Odit Cane pejus et Angue. 

Hated worse than a mad dog, or a venemous 
serpent. The man who is entirely engrossed 
by a passion for accumulating riches, or ho- 
nours, is a dupe to parasites, or to a mistress, 
who will ruin him, and yet he will not suffer a 
word to be said against the object of his pur- 
suit, but would hate worse than a mad dog:, 

' O 

or a poisonous serpent, whoever should attempt 
to wean him from her. 


( 53 ) 

Omnia bonos Viros decent. 

All things are becoming in good men. If a 
man has acquired a character for uprightness 
and justice, a favourable construction is put 
upon every thing he says or does, On the 
contrary, the best actions of bad men are 
suspected ; as they are never imagined to pro- 
ceed from the heart, some deep and villanous 
design is supposed to be couched under them. 
" A liar is not to be believed, even when he 
speaks the truth*" 

In Acre piscari, In Mare venari. 

It is fishing in the air, or hunting in the 
sea, may be said to persons attempting things 
perfectly incompatible; as if those should ex- 
pect to enjoy a perfectly retired and quiet life, 
who are engaged in any public offices or busi- 
ness; or happiness, while eagerly employed in 
the pursuit of sensual pleasure; or content- 
ment, while anxiously intent on increasing 
their wealth which will be much more likely 
to add to their cares than to their comfort. 


C 54 ) 

Negkctis urenda Filiv innasdiur Agris. 

As fern and other hurtful weeds spring up 
in ground that is not tilled, so do ill humours 
abound in the bodies of the idle, and evil 
thoughts take possession of their minds. Hence 
we truly say, " L'ozio il padre di tutti i vizi," 
idleness is the root of all evil, "L'oisivete nous 
mene a la mendicite," and leads to beggary. 
Idle persons are necessarily restless and un- 
happy. " They are never pleased, never well 
in body or in mind, but weary still, sickly still, 
vexed still, loathing still ; weeping, sighing, 
grieving, suspecting, offended with the world, 
-and with every object; and this is the reason," 
Burton says, "that so many wealthy and great 
personages, become melancholy." 

Reperit Deus Nocentem. 

God has visited him for his sins. " It has 
come home to him at last." The security he 
so long enjoyed, proved a snare to him, and 
led him to the commission of still greater 
crimes, hoping for the same impunity; but 


( 55 ) 

the merited punishment has at length over- 
taken him. It intimates, that no offence, 
though committed ever so privately, can es- 
cape the knowledge of the Deity, or ultimately 
his just vengeance. 

Dem u Ice re Caput. 

Patting and stroking the head, as we do of 
dogs, and other animals, to put them in good 
humour with us. Flattering with soft speeches. 
" Praetermitto," St. Jerome says to his cor- 
respondent, "salutationis officia, quibus meum 
demulces caput," not to mention the kind 
speeches and friendly reception I met with, 
doubtless with the view of bribing my judg- 
ment, and inducing me to favour your pro- 

Catulce, Domlnas imitantes. 

See the young whelps looking big, and at- 
tempting to imitate their elders, was used to 
be said of servants affecting the state and 
grandeur of their masters. This is more par- 
E 2 ticularly 


ticularly seen in the conduct of the clerks in* 
public offices, who often expect to be addressed 
with more ceremony, and to have more atten- 
tion paid to them than is required by their 
superiors. " The insolence of office " is re- 
corded by Shakespeare, as constituting no small 
part of the miseries of this life. 

Lingua bellare. 

To war with the tongue, to spend the whole 
of one's rage in coarse and rude language, in 
threats which we havie neither the power, nor 
inclination, perhaps, to carry into execution, 
is the resort of weak and cowardly persons. 
Much of this wordy war is practised at the 
bar, particularly by those defending a bad 
cause. " Qui aspidis venenum in lingua cir- 
cumferunt," the poison of asps is under their 
lips. Wounds made with the tongue are often 
more hurtful than those made with the sword. 
" La lengua del inal amigo, mas corta que el 
cuchillo," the tongue of a false friend is sharper 
than a knife, cuts deeper. " La lengua no ha 
osso, e osso fa rompere," the tongue breaks 


bones, though itself has none. " Mors et vita 
in manibus linguae," it is often the arbiter of 
life and death. An intemperate tongue is not 
only injurious to others, but to its possessor, 
it is therefore said, " Vincula da lingure vel tibi 
vincula dabit," restrain your tongue, or it will 
bring you into restraint. Hence there is no 
precept more frequently or more strongly in- 
culcated, than to set a guard over that mis- 
chievous member. " He that keepeth his 
mouth, keepeth his life, but he that openeth 
wide his lips, shall have destruction," and 
" the tongue of the wise is health." " En 
boca cerrada no entra moscha," flies do not 
enter into the mouth that is shut, or, no mis- 
chief can ensue from being silent; and "an 
ounce of honey will catch more flies than a 
gallon of vinegar." William Paulet, Marquis 
of Winchester, who filled high offices in th 
state, during the reigns of Henry the Eighth, 
Edward the Sixth, and the Queens Mary and 
Elizabeth, being asked by what means he had 
preserved himself through so many changes, 
said, " by being a willow, and not an oak." 

f.3 Re- 

( 58 ) 

Refutantis Laudem immodicam. 

Checking immoderate commendation, or 
praise. " Nullum ego sum nuinen, quid me 
immortalibus eequas?" I am a mere human 
being, with all the follies and failings incident 
to them, why do ye then raise me to the rank 
of the gods, may be said by any one, finding 
himself treated with too much homage and 

Orel habet Galeam. 

He has the helmet of Pluto, was used to be 
said of persons, who by base and insidious 
arts, incited others to acts of villany, without 
themselves appearing to be concerned in them. 
Those who wore the helmet of Pluto were said 
to be invisible, but to see every thing about 
them ; whence the adage. The ring of Gyges 
was fabled to have a similar power of making 
those who wore it invisible. Probably nothing 
more is meant by these stories, than that rich 
men have great privileges, few persons being 
bold enough to scrutinize into their actions, 


( 59 ) 

or to censure their errors. " Las necedades 
del rico, por sentencias passan en el mundo," 
even the foolish sayings of the rich are es- 
teemed as oracles. 

Apil opus est. 

There is need of parsley here, was used to be 
said when any one was affected with a dis- 
ease, for which there was no known remedy, 
and which would soon extinguish his life; al- 
luding to the custom of scattering parsley over 
their graves, which was the ancient custom 
among the Grecians. They were also used to 
crown those who were conquerors in the Isth- 
mian games, with this herb. 

Prtestat habere acerbos inimicos, guam eos 
Amlcos qui dulces videantur. 

Better an open enemy, than a false and de- 
ceitful friend, or than a friend who is too soft 
and easy, and too readily assents to whatever 
you propose, was frequently in the mouth of 
Cato. An enemy, by being a spy upon our 
actions, and by severely censuring our slightest 

E 4 errors, 

( 60 ) 

errors, may make us cautious, and even lead 
us to reform any follies or vices we may have 
accustomed ourselves to, or indulged ourselves 
in. Philip of Macedon said the Athenian ora- 
tors, who were incessant in their endeavours 
to excite the Grecians against him, had by 
the severity of their censures, conferred on 
him a lasting obligation, for they had taught 
him to look into and regulate his conduct in 
such a manner, as would conduce materially 
to the success of his enterprizes. 

Sub Cultro liqult. 

He is under the knife, in great danger or 
extremity. Our phrase,, "he is under the 
hatchet," is of similar import. The adage 
was applied when any one who had fallen into 
an ambush, into the sea, or into any other 
peril, was left to wade through, or extricate 
himself by his own strength or ingenuity. 
The metaphor is taken from a victim standing 
at the altar, ready to be sacrificed. 

" fugit improbus et me sub cultro liquit," 


( 61 ) 

Instead of assisting, he fled, and left me to 
struggle through my difficulties unaided. Oc- 
casions offer too frequently of applying this 

Date mihi Pelvim. 

Bring me a bason, was used to be said, when 
any one had so completely worn out the pa- 
tience of his auditors, by the tediousness, 
absurdity, or wickedness of his discourse, that 
it could no longer be borne, and was meant 
to express the utmost contempt for the relater. 
" It made my gorge rise," or " I could have 
spit in the fellow's face." 

Quod alibi diminutum, exequatur alibi. 

Though deficient in one quality, yet abun- 
dantly endowed with others, equally valuable 
and productive. He is indeed blind, but has 
an exquisite ear to music. He is neither 
strong, nor swift of foot, but is a good pen- 
man and accountant. Of kin to it are, 

" Non omnes possumus omnia," and 
" Non omnis fert omnia tellus," 


( 6* ) 

No man should be expected to be intimately 
acquainted with every art or science, nor any 
land to produce every kind of fruit or grain* 

When Philip of Macedon was contending 
with the master of his choir, on some musical 
subject, the musician, instead of answering 
him, said, " God forbid that your majesty 
.should be as well instructed in these matters, 
as I am." 

Usque ad Aras Amicus. 

A friend even to the altar, that is, who will 
do every thing that is not offensive to good 
morals, or that will not oblige him to a breach 
of his duty to God, to his family, or neigh- 
bours. Such was the answer of Pericles to a 
friend, who had required of him in a certain 
cause to give a false testimony. He was not 
unmindful of his obligation to his friend, but 
he dared not violate his duty to the gods. It 
was the custom anciently for persons taking 
an oath, to lay one of their hands on the altar, 
whence the adage. 

The following, from Beloe's translation of 


( 63 ) 

Aulus Gellius, places the character of Chilo, 
the Lacedemonian, in so pleasing a light, that 
I am induced to lay it before the reader. It 
has also some reference to the adage before 
us. When death was approaching, he thus 
spake to his surrounding friends: "That there 
is very little of all that I have said and done 
in the course of a long life, which has given 
me cause of repentance, ye may, perhaps, Avell 
know. At this period, I certainly do not de- 
lude myself when I say, that I have never 
clone any thing, the remembrance of which 
gives me uneasiness, one incident alone ex- 
cepted. I was once a judge with two others, 
on the life of a friend. The law was such as 
to require his condemnation. Either, therefore, 
a friend was to be lost by a capital punishment, 
or the law was to be evaded. In this case, I 
silently gave my own vote for his condemna- 
tion, but I persuaded my fellow judges to 
acquit him. Thus I neither violated the duty 
of the friend, nor of the judge. But the fact 
gives me this uneasiness; I fear that it was 
both perfidious and criminal, to persuade others 


to do that, which in my own judgment was 
not right." 

Athos celat Lett era Lemnice Bovis. 

Athos covers with its shade the Lemnian 
ox. The adage was used to be applied to any 
one injuring the character, or obscuring the 
fame of another. In the island of Lemnos, 
there was formerly the statue of an Ox, of an 
immense size. This, however, did not prevent 
its being obscured by the shadow of Mount 
Athos, which, though at a great distance, ex- 
tended itself over a large portion of the island. 

JExigit et a Statuis Farinas. 

I warrant he will make something of it, he 
would get meal even from a statue, nor is there 
any thing so mean and worthless, but he will 
reap some profit from it. But the adage was 
more usually applied to princes, and governors, 
exacting large tributes from poor, and almost 
desolate places, or obliging the inhabitants of 


( 65 ) 

their principal cities to pay such immense sums> 
as to reduce the most wealthy and prosperous 
of them, to beggary. Of both these, we have 
now abundant instances in the conduct of 
Buonaparte and his myrmidons. It was also 
applied, Erasmus says, to covetous priests, 
" apud quos ne sepulchrum quidem gratis con- 
ceclitur," who extracted profit even from fune- 
rals ; but these dues are now usually paid 
readily enough, either out of respect to the 
deceased, or from the consoling consideration 
that it will be the last cost the survivor will 
be put to on their account. 

Quid ad Mercurium. 

What has this to do with Mercury, was 
said when any one through ignorance, or with 
the view of distracting the attention of the 
auditor, introduced any matter foreign to the 
subject intended to be discussed. What has 
this to do with the business before us. Mer- 
cury seems to have been made use of, as he 
was esteemed to be the god, or patron of 

A puro 

( 66 ) 

A puro pura defluit Aqua. 

From a pure fountain, pure water may be 
expected to issue, and from a just and up- 
right man, none but kind and beneficent 

Reperire Rimam. 

He will find some chink, some aperture by 
which he will escape, was said of crafty, subtle, 
and cunning men, who, confine them ever so 
carefully, would still find some method of get- 
ting loose ; a Monkhausen. But the adage 
is also applicable to persons who are ingenious 
in finding a flaw in any engagement or agree- 
ment, when it is no longer their interest to 
abide by the terms of it ; to the lower mem- 
bers of the law, who read a deed not so much 
to find out what was the intention of the par- 
ties, as to see whether it may not be made td 
bear some other construction. 

" To fiud out meanings never meant." 
Or who, in penning a deed, contrive to insert 
some word of doubtful, or equivocal sense, 


( 67 ) 

that may vitiate some of the covenants, always 
looking to the advantage of the craft. 

Ungentem pungit, pungentem Rusticm 

" Oignez vilain il vous poindra, 
Poignez vilain il vous oindra." 

If you treat a clown with mildness and ci- 
vility he will fancy you are afraid of him, and 
will return your kindness with rudeness or 
insult ; but if preserving your dignity, you 
treat him as your inferior or with some degree 
of authority, he will crouch to and fawn upou 
you : 

" A base unthankful clownish brood, 
Return ill offices for good, 
But if you should them harshly treat, 
Then spaniel-like they '11 lick your feet." 

" El ruyn, mientras mas le ruegan, mas se 
estiende," a low and base man, the more you 
entreat him, the more insolent he becomes. 

Cognatio movet Inmdiam. 

Relationship excites envy. We rarely envy 
the good fortune of those with whom we are 


( 68 ) 

little acquainted ; it is those who are nearer 
to us, in the same school, college, or regi* 
ment; or with whom we are intimately related, 
or associated in the same business, or who are 
in the same rank in life with ourselves, whose 
superior success disturbs us. For the success 
of persons very much superior to us rarely 
gives rise to this detestable and tormenting 
passion, which undermines the health, and 
when in excess occasions melancholy, and 
even madness. " As a moth gnaws a gar- 
ment," Saint Chrysostom says, " so doth envy 
consume a man." 

-" If she but tastes 

The slenderest pittance of commended virtue. 
She surfeits of it.'' 

In the same spirit Swift says, 

" To all my foes, O Fortune send 
Thy gifts, but never to a friend ; 
I scarcely can endure the first, 
But this with envy makes me burst." 

Stultus semper- inclpit vivere. 
The fool is always about to begin to live, 


never determined or settled as to his course of 
life ; like a weathercock, changing his plans 
as often as the wind shifts, or taking the ad- 
vice of every new acquaintance. It may be 
useful to such men to hear what Martial says 
on this procrastinating disposition as rendered 
by Cowley : 

" To-morrow you will live, you always cry ; 
In what far country does this morrow lie, 
That 'tis so mighty long e'er it arrive ? 
Beyond the Indies does this morrow live ? 
Tis so far fetched this morrow that I fear 
'Twill be both very old and very dear. 
To-morrow I will live, the fool doth say ; 
To-day itself 's too late, the wise liv'd yesterday." 

In C&lum jacularis. 

Threatening those whom you cannot hurt, 
but whose anger may be highly prejudicial to 
yourself, is like hurling your dart against the 
heavens, which it cannot reach, but it may 
wound you in its return. " Chi piscia contra 
il vento, si bagna la camiscia," and " Quien 
al cielo escupe, en la cara le cae," who casts 

VOL. ii. F his 

( 70 ) 

his spittle against the heavens, will receive it 
back on his face. 

Ante hac putabam te habere Cormia. 

I thought you had been furnished with 
horns ; that is, by your blustering, I thought 
you had the power, at the least, of defending 
yourself; this was used to be said to persons 
who were found on experience to be miserably 
defective in courage, or in any other quality 
in which they were supposed to excel. 

Ante Barbam doces Series. 

Being young and inexperienced do you set 
yourself up for a teacher ? this among the an- 
cients would have been looked upon as a pre- 
posterous attempt, and perhaps our manners 
are not much mended by our departing from 
their practice on this subject. " Odi pueru- 
los prsecoci sapientia," I hate these forward 
wits, or to see young men thrusting them- 
selves into concerns that require rather 
strength of heads than of hands. The most 


( 71 ) 

early wits were supposed to be least lasting, 
and never to attain to perfection ; " soon ripe 
soon rotten," is a very old maxim. " Buey 
viejo, sulco derecho," an old ox makes a 
straight furrow ; and " diablo sabe mucho, 
por que es viejo," the devil knows much, the 
Spaniards say, because he is old* 

Auro Loquente nlhil Collet qucevis Ratio. 

Against money or a bribe, reason or elo- 
quence are of little avail, an apothegm no 
where more known or acknowledged than in 
this country, where, according to a saying 
imputed to Sir Robert Walpole, every man 
has its price. " L' argento 6 un buon passe- 
porto," money is a good passport, and " Quien 
dinero tiene, haze lo que quiere," he who has 
money has friends, fame, and whatever he 
pleases : we are not therefore single in the 
homage we pay to it, and " money," we say, 
" is welcome every where." Ovid also long 
since, addressing himself to it, said 

" Quid non mortalia pectora cogis, 

Auri sacra fames." 

F 2 What 

C 72 ) 

What atrocities will not the cursed thirst after 
gold impel men to commit ! 

Durum et durum nonfaciunt Murum. 

Two hard bodies will not coalesce to make 
a rampart or wall ; there must be a soft sub- 
stance placed between, to cement them. Two 
proud, haughty, intemperate men will never 
agree together, without the intervention of 
a mild, quiet, rational, and peaceable dispo- 
sition, to soften asperities and bring them into 

Sublatd Lucernd, nihil interest inter 


"Joan is as good as my lady in the dark," 
and " De noche todos los gatos son pardos," 
in the dark all cats are grey. The following, 
which is familiar to all my readers, says all 
that is necessary on this subject : 

" Whilst in the dark on thy soft hand I hung, 
And heard the tempting syren in thy tongue j 
What flames, what darts, what anguish I endured : 
But when the candle entered. I was cured." 

J\ fuller 

Muller turn bene olet, ubi nihil okt. 

A woman then smells most sweet, when she 
has no scent ; which may be best illustrated 
by the following lines from Ben Jonson : 

" Still to be neat, still to be drest, 
As you were going to a feast ; 
Still to be powdered, still perfum'd, 
Lady, it is to be presumed, 
Though art's hid causes are not found, 
All is not sweet, all is not sound," fyc. fyc. 

The French proverb lays a further embargo 
on the ladies; " la femme de bien n'a ni 
yeux, ni oreilles," discreet women have nei- 
ther eyes nor ears ; and the Spaniards would 
takeaway their feet also, "la muger en casa, y 
la pierna quebrada," the wife at home, and her 
leg broken; so averse are they to their gadding 
abroad : and in another of their sayings, they 
only allow a female to go out three times, "En 
la vida, la muger tres salidas ha de hazer," viz. 
to be christened, to be married, and to be bu- 
ried ; also on giving a girl, who loved going 
abroad, to be married, " algodon cogio, qual 
la halleres, tal te la doy," she has been gather- 
F 3 ing 

ing cotton, (been gadding,) you must take her 
as you find her. What privileges the women 
get by being married, may be learned by the 
following, " Madre, que cosa es casar ? Hija, 
hilar, parir, y llorar," mother, the daughter 
says, what is it to be married ? it is, my child, 
to spin, to bear children, and to weep. 
" When the mother of the king of Spain was 
on her road towards Madrid, she passed 
through a little town famous for its manufac- 
tory of gloves and stockings ; the magistrates 
of the place thought they could not better 
express their joy for the reception of their new 
queen, than by presenting her with a sample 
of those commodities for which their town 
was remarkable. The major-domo who con- 
ducted the princess, received the gloves very 
graciously ; but when the stockings were pre- 
sented, he flung them away with great indig- 
nation, and severely reprimanded the magis- 
trates for this egregious piece of indecency ; 
Know, says he, that a Queen of Spain has no 
legs. The poor young queen, who, at that 
time, understood the language but imperfect- 
ly, and had often been frightened by stories 


( 75 ) 

of Spanisli jealousy, imagined that they were 
to cut off her legs, upon which she fell a cry- 
ing and begged them to send her back to 
Germany, for that she never could endure the 
operation ; and it was with some difficulty 
they could appease her. Philip IV is said 
never in his life to have laughed heartily, but 
at the recital of this story. 

Occasiofacit Furem. 

" L' occasione fa il ladrone," and " Tocca- 
sion fait le larron," " opportunity makes the 
thief," we should therefore leave it as little as 
possible in the power of those who are about 
us, to rob us, that is, we should keep a watch- 
ful eye over them ; " a quick landlord makes 
a careful tenant," and an exact and severe 
master, industrious and honest servants. " En 
casa abierta el justo pecca," an open door, or 
an open chest, may tempt even a good man to 
do a dishonorable action ; " if we place butter 
hy the fire it will melt," was the observation 
of a Hindoo, who was asked his opinion of an 
English country-dance, of which he had been 
F 4 a spec^ 

( 76 ) 

a spectator ; not conceiving, as it should 
seem, that ladies who suffered themselves to be 
handled so freely, would resist further liber- 
ties if they should be offered. 

Procul a Jove, procul a Fulmine. 

Far from Jove, far from the thunderbolt. 
The countries at the greatest distance from the 
court or capital of a kingdom, being out of 
view, often escape much of the oppression, 
which those nearer at hand are obliged to sub- 
mit to. 

Priusquam Theognis nasceretur. 

Before Theognis was born, was used to be 
said of any transaction that occurred so early 
that its origin could not easily be traced. 
Cicero, in discussing the question how far or 
to what degree a man would be justified in 
violating the laws of his country, in defend- 
ing the life or reputation of his friend, says, 
" we must not take up arms against our country 


( 77 ) 

to serve our friend," " and who did not know 
this," Lucilius observed, " before Theognis 
was born," which thence came to be used as 
a proverb. Theognis was an early poet of 
Megara, whose moral sentences have been 
quoted by some of the most considerable of 
the Greek writers. 

Lingua Amicus. 

A friend in words ; any one who by his 
conversation seems desirous of being esteemed 
a friend, but whose kindness extends no fur- 
ther ; who is free in promising, but very back- 
ward in performing any friendly office, is the 
kind of person intended to be censured by this 
adage. " Pollicitis dives, quilibet esse potest," 
any man may be liberal in promises, they cost 
nothing. " II se ruine a promettre, et s'acquitte 
& ne rien tenir," he ruins himself by promising, 
but saves himself by not performing, for "pro- 
mettre et tenir sont deux," there is a great 
difference between saying and doing, which is 
also a Spanish axiom, " Del dicho al hecho, 
ay gran trecho.'' " II nous a promis monts 


( 78 ) 

ct merveilles," he promises mountains; "more 
in a month," we say, " than he will perform in 
a year." 

Lingua non redarguta. 

A tongue not to be silenced. " Qui ratio- 
nibusconvicti, non cedunt tamen," who though 
convicted, overcome by argument, still refuse 
to yield. " Nunquam persuadebis, quamvis 
persuaseris," although you have convicted me, 
you shall not convince me. Determined, ob- 
stinate incredulity. 

Serpens ni edat Serpentem, Draco nonftt. 

A serpent, unless he feeds on serpents, does 
not become a dragon. It need hardly be 
mentioned, that the dragon was fabled by the 
ancients, as a ferocious and destructive beast, 
and as the head of that class of animals. The 
adage intimates that kings only become great 
potentates by destroying neighbouring princes, 
invading and conquering their territories, as 
the vast strength of lions, tigers, and other 


( 79 ) 

beasts of prey, is supported by the destruction 
of animals of less bulk and power, and as men 
rarely acquire enormous fortunes, but by in- 
juring and oppressing other. 

Qui vitat Molam, vitat Farinam. 
" No mill, no meal," or, if the noise of the 
mill offends you, you can have no meal. " Who 
will not work, must not expect to eat," " Who 
would have eggs, must bear the cackling of 
the hen." If the ground be not tilled, it will 
produce no grain, or the corn will be choked 
with weeds. " Lutum nisi tundatur, non fit 
urceus," unless the clay be well pounded and 
wrought, it cannot be formed into vessels. 
Nothing valuable is to be produced without 
industry, "et quid tandem non efficiunt ma- 
nus," and to labour and ingenuity, scarcely 
any thing is impossible. 

"Thou would'st be great," Lady Macbeth says 

to her husband, 
" Art not without ambition ; but without 

The illness should attend it: what thou would'st highly, 
That would'st thou holily ; would'st not play false, 
And yet would'st wrongly win." 


( 80 ) 

This, though addressed, and suited particu- 
larly to Macbeth, is applicable in its principle 
to mankind in general. We all of us wish for, 
and would abound in the conveniences of life, 
but all have not that energy of mind, which is 
necessary to set them at work to obtain them. 
Hence we find in all barbarous, and semi ci- 
vilised countries, the inhabitants are prone to 
thieving, as a more compendious way of getting 
what they desire, than by their labour. Cap- 
tain Cook, lost his life by attempting to make 
the people of the Sandwich islands esteem, and 
punish robbery, as a crime ; and we see with 
what difficulty the propensity is restrained in 
this, and other countries of Europe, where we 
are taught from our infancy, and it is made 
a part of our religion, to refrain from stealing, 
and where it is prohibited under the severest 
penalties, in some cases, even to forfeiture of 
life ; yet many daily hazard that punishment, 
rather than exert themselves to procure what 
they want by industry : so true it is, that 
" Idleness is the root of all evil," as it is also, 
that " Lazy folks take the most pains," the 
robber procuring his booty with much greater 


( 81 ) 

difficulty and hazard, than it costs the indus- 
trious man to obtain what is of equal, or supe- 
rior value. In India, we are told, there are 
whole tribes, or communities of robbers, the 
individuals of which do not shrink from the 
imputation. The Mahrattas are a nation of 
robbers, and on what other principle are car- 
ried on nearly all the wars of Europe ? 

Optimum Obsonium para Senectuti. 
Make ample provision for old age. " Chi 
in prima non pensa, in ultimo sospira," who 
does not think before, sighs after, therefore, 
" Make hay while the sun shines." " Lay up 
against a rainy day," and " Take care to fea- 
ther your nest while young," for "Non semper 
crit asstas," it will not be always summer ; 
and it is as disgraceful for young persons to 
neglect the means of improving their fortunes, 
as it is for the aged to be over solicitous about 
increasing theirs. Diogenes being asked what 
he considered as the most wretched state of 
man, answered " an indigent old age." This 
seems to have been said with too little con- 
sideration. Poverty is generally and not un- 

( 82 ) 

deservedly esteemed an evil, and the averting 
it affords the most powerful incentive to ac- 
tion, but the pressure of it must be much less 
felt in age, than in the vigour of life. Among 
the ancients, indeed, age was itself esteemed 
an evil, as it incapacitates from making those 
excursions, and following those pleasures which 
contribute so much to the felicity of the early 
part of our lives. But if with the capacity for 
enjoying, we lose the propensity or desire for 
having them, it should rather be considered as 
a blessing. By losing them we attain a state 
of calm and quiet, rarely experienced by the 
young, neither would it indeed be suitable to 
them, the passions and desires being the gales 
which put them in motion, and lead them 
to signalize themselves. Without them they 
would become torpid, and would do nothing 
useful to themselves, nor to the public. Action 
therefore is the element of the young, as quiet 
and retirement is of the aged. If life has been 
passed innocently, and the aged have not to 
reproach themselves with having deserted their 
duty, or with the commission of any crime for 
which they ought to blush, the reflection on 


their past conduct, and on such acts of bene- 
ficence and kindness they may have performed, 
or of any thing done by which the community 
may eventually be benefited, will abundantly 
compensate for what time has taken from them. 
The aged will also have learned among other 
things, if it should happen to be their lot, to 
bear poverty with composure. If little should 
now remain to them, their wants will also be 
equally few. The plainest and simplest diet, 
clothes, and apartments, may very well serve 
them, and are, perhaps, the best suited to their 
state. The old man, therefore, if his poverty 
is not the effect of vice, or folly, will soon 
accommodate himself to his situation. But if 
he has been himself the author of his degrada- 
tion, he will regret and pine, not so much at the 
loss of that affluence which he no longer wants, 
as at the vices or follies which occasioned the 
loss of them. Old and infirm people should 
continue to exert themselves in all matters 
regarding their persons, as much, and as long 
as they can, and they generally may do this, 
nearly to the period of the extinction of their 
lives, if they early and resolutely resist that 


( 84 ) 

languor, which feebleness is apt to induce. 
While they shew this species of independance, 
they will retain the respect of those who are 
about them. A total imbecility and incapacity 
to perform the common offices of life, is the 
most miserable state to which human nature 
can be reduced. 

llli Mors gratis incubat, qui notus nimis 
omnibus, ignotus moritur sibi. 

Death falls heavy upon him who, known to 
others, is only unknown to himself. Though 
self-love is an inherent principle in human 
nature, yet how few are there that are solicit- 
ous to become acquainted with themselves, or 
who can bear to be alone ! Not but that the 
student will, with great satisfaction, pass many 
hours every day in his study, the merchant in 
his closet ; but M'hen their respective labours 
are finished, each of them have recourse to 
company to amuse and divert their thoughts. 
Though ^without living associates before, they 
were still in company, but their books being 
*lmt, they then find themselves alone; and if 


( 85 } 

they were not to change the scene, they might 
be induced to look into themselves, to inquire 
Jmto the state of their mind, 

" That task which as we follow or despise, 
The oldest is a fool, the youngest wise; 
Which done, the poorest can no wants endure, 
And which not done, the richest must be poor." 

In this task, there are few who are inclined to 
engage. This does not seem to arise from the 
difficulty of the undertaking, but from an 
unwillingness to enter on the study, lest it 
should lead to self-condemnation, and they 
should find it necessary to give up some fa- 
vourite pursuit, or practice, which interest, or 
pleasure, had made too agreeable to be parted 
with. But those who are so averse to this in- 
quiry should consider, "that as the tree falls, 
so it lies.*' Cowley has well described the 
exit of such an one in the following lines. 

" To him alas, to him I fear, 

The face of death will terrible appear, 
Who in his life, flattering his senseless pride, 
By being known to all the world beside, 
Does Hot himself when he is dying know, 

Nor what he is, nor whither he's to go." 


VOL. n. e Though 


( 86 ) 

Though this article is already far extended, 
the reader will not be displeased at seeing a 
passage from the golden verses of Pythagoras, 
on the utility of self-examination, which is 
enforced with peculiar energy. The verses, 
which well deserve the name of " golden," are 
supposed to contain the principal points of 
morality, taught by the great philosopher 
whose name they bear, and to have been 
delivered down to posterity by one of his 

" Let not the stealing god of sleep surprise, 
Nor creep in slumbers on the weary eyes, 
Ere ev'ry action of the former day, 
Strictly thou dost and righteously survey. 
With reverence at thy own tribunal stand,, 
And answer justly to thy own demand. 
Where have 1 been? in what have I transgress'd? 
What good or ill has this day's life express'd ? 
Where have I failed in what J ought to do ? 
Tn what to God, to man, or to myself I owe? 
Inquire severe whate'er from first to last, 
From morning's dawn till evening's gloom is past,. 
If evil were thy deeds, repenting mourn, 
And let thy soul with strong remorse- be torn. 
If good, the good with peace of mind repay, 
And to thy secret self with pleasure say, 
Rejoice, my heart, for all went well to-day. 


( 87 ) 

These thoughts, and chiefly these, thy mind should move'; 
Employ thy study, and engage thy love. 
These are the rules that will to virtue lead, 
And teach thy feet her heavenly paths to tread." 

Malum Consilium Consult ori pessimum. 

Evil counsel is most pernicious to the giver 
of it. The adage is applicable to persons \vho 
find the mischief they intended for others, 
fall upon themselves. " He hath graven and 
digged a pit, and hath fallen into the midst 
of it himself." Advice is of a sacred nature, 
and should he given faithfully, and those who 
prostitute it to evil purposes, are deserving of 
the severest punishment. The following story 
is related as having given rise to this apo- 
thegm. The statue of Horatius Codes, who 
had defended the passage of a bridge singly 
against the whole Etrurian army, being struck 
with lightning, the augurs were consulted as 
to the expiation proper to be made to the 
offended deities, for to that cause the Romans 
attributed these and similar accidents; and 
they advised, among other things, that the 

e 2 statue 

( 88 ) 

statue should be placed in a lower situation ; 
meaning, perhaps, where it would be less liable 
to a similar injury. But the advice being sup- 
posed to be given through treachery, they 
were accused, convicted, and put to death. 
This was so agreeable to the superstitious 
people, that for a long time after they sang 
the verse which forms this adage, in triumph, 
about the streets. The augurs are said to 
have acknowledged their guilt, as many poor 
old women, accused of witchcraft, have done 
in this country. The story is more circum- 
stantially related by Aulus Gellius. See Beloe's 
translation of that entertaining work. Though 
augury was held in high estimation by the 
Greeks and Romans, scarcely any great action 
being undertaken among them without having 
recourse to it; and the common people in both 
countries, as well as many eminent for their 
rank, and for their literary attainments, placed 
an entire confidence in it, yet there were not 
wanting, at all times, persons who held it in 
contempt. Cato, the censor, Cicero tells us, 
expressed his astonishment, that the auspices 
could keep their countenance when two of 


( 89 ) 

them met. " Mirari se aiebat, quod non rideret 
haruspex haruspicem cum videret." And 
Homer makes Hector say to Polydamus, ad- 
vising him not to attack the Grecian camp, 
on account of some sinister omen. 

" Ye vagrants of the sky ! your wings extend, 
Or where the suns arise, or where descend ; 
To right, to left, unheeded take your way" 

" Without a sign, his sword the brave man draws, 
And asks no omen but his country's cause. 

When Cassius was advised by the augurs not 
to fight with the Parthians until the moon 
had passed the scorpion, he said, " he was not 
afraid of the scorpion, but of the arrows of 
the enemy." But some of the augurs were, 
doubtless, dupes to their qwn art, and as cre- 
dulous, and as foolish, as any modern old 

Corycceus auscultate it. 

A Corycsean has been listening. This was 

said when any one found that a transaction to 

which he thought no one was privy, had been 

discovered. The Corycaeans, a band of rob- 

G 3 bers 

bers inhabiting a mountain of that name, con* 
trived, in order that they might know where 
to levy contributions with certainty, to mix 
among the merchants and traders, and by lis- 
tening to their discourse, learned what sort of 
goods each of them carried with them, where 
the}' were going, and at what time they meant 
to set out on their journey ; when taking with 
them as many associates as they thought ne- 
qessary, they met, and robbed them. 

Ammo cegrotanti Medicus est Oratio. 

Kind words are a medicine to an afflicted 
spirit. " A soft answer turneth away wrath." 
" Cortesia de boca mucho valer, y poco costa," 
civility costs little, but has considerable influ- 
ence in appeasing restless and unquiet minds. 
"An ounce of honey," we say, "will catch 
more flics than a gallon of vinegar." 

" Sunt verba et voces quibus hunc lenire dolorem 
Possis, et magnam morbi depellere partera." 

" Know there are words, which fresh and fresh applied, 
Will cure the arrantest puppy of his pride." 

Pride, and other evil affections of the mind, 


( 91 ) 

were by the Stoics considered as diseases, for 
which there were no better remedies, than good 
and sensible discourses. 

Contra Torrente.m niti. 

" Striving against the stream," which those 
may be said to do who attempt to convince 
obstinately perverse persons of the impropriety 
of any thing they have once resolved to defend, 
or of undertaking any project they have de- 
termined to accomplish. 

Radit usque ad Cittern. 

He shaves close, " ad vivum resecat," " he 
cuts to the quick." The phrase is applied to 
persons too exact in taking what is their due. 
"The avaricious man," as described by Theo- 
phrastus, " though his tenants pay him their 
rent duly every month, will teaze them for an 
odd farthing that remained at their last 
reckoning^ and is perpetually inculcating to 
his wife never to lend any thing ; for an end 
ef a candle, or an handful of suit or of oat- 
4 meal 

meal will amount to money at the year's end. 
He makes the barber shave him to the quick, 
that it may be the longer before he wants him 
again." Shylock would abate nothing of the 
penalty of his bond, though it should cost the 
debtor his life, but says to those soliciting his 

" My deeds upon my head : I crave the law, 
The penalty and forfeiture of ray bond." 

A late chief magistrate of London, on being 
told by one of his workmen, an old and faith" 
ful servant, what pleasure he had received in 
seeing his master in his state coach, though 
pleased with the homage the poor man had 
paid him, yet nature so far prevailed, that he 
mulcted him a quarter of a day for time lost 
in going to see the procession. 

Saxum volutum non obducitur Musco. 

" Pietra che rotula non piglia muffa," and 
" piedra movediza no la cubre moho," that is, 
" a rolling stone is ever bare of moss," is used 
to be said to persons who are frequently 


( 93 ) 

changing their situation or employment; such 
persons being more likely to dissipate and 
waste, than to improve and increase their 
property. To the same purport is, " Planta 
que sjepe transfertur non coalescit," the tree 
that is often moved does not thrive. 

Anus Hircum olet. 

" How like a goat she smells," said of libi- 
dinous old women. The phrase, therefore, 
taken originally from the Greeks, is neither 
modern nor peculiar to this country; though 
no where used, it may be presumed, but among 
the common people. 

JJctbet et Musca Splenam, and 
Inest et Formica sua Bills. 

" Even a fly has its sting," and " a worm if 
trodden upon will turn," and make an effort 
to avenge the injury : we should therefore not 
despise an enemy however weak and insignifi- 
cant, or wantonly offend any one ; there be- 

ing few persons but who may, at some time, 
have it in their power to do us an injury, or 
who may not in some way be useful to us. 
Socrates determined him to be the wisest man, 
who gave the least offence. 

Camelus desiderans Cornua etiam Aures 

The camel, discontented at not having 
horns, lost its ears likewise. The adage 
teaches that we should be thankful for those 
faculties and powers with which it has pleased 
Providence to endow us, and not to ask for 
properties inconsistent with our state, and 
which would be rather injurious to us than 
beneficial, as horns would be to the camel, 
whose strength does not lie in his neck. The 
fable seems to have taken its rise from the 
camel's having shorter ears than most animals 
of its size, and to its not being or reputed not 
to be quick of hearing. Hence the ancients 
feigned, that Jupiter, offended at their asking 
for horns, had deprived them of their ears 


Casnare me doce. 

Teach me how to eat, give. me. information 
on subjects with which you are acquainted, 
and I shall readily listen to you, hut do not 
pretend to instruct me in matters of which 
you have no knowlege, was said by Bacchus 
to Hercules, who was laying down rules for 
the construction of tragedies and other poems: 
Hercules being as famed for the voracious- 
ness of his appetite, as for his great bodily 

Ad pcenitendum properat cito qui judicat. 

Who determines precipitately hastens to 
repentance ; which cannot be better illus- 
trated than by the following, from N. Howe's 
translation of the golden verses of Pythago- 
ras : 

" Let wary thought each enterprise forerun, 
And ponder on thy task before begun, 
Lest folly should the wretched work deface 
And mock thy fruitless labours with disgrace. 
Fools huddle on and always are in haste, 
Act without thought, and thoughtless words they waste. 


( 96 ) 

But thou, in all thou dost, with early cares 
Strive to prevent, at first, a fate like theirs ; 
That sorrow in the end may never wait, 
Nor sharp repentance make thee wise too late/* 

In Re mala, Animo si bono utare, adjwoat. 

It is good to keep up our spirits under mis- 
fortunes and to use our endeavours to miti- 
gate or remove them, or if that cannot be 
done to bear them with patience, which will 
of itself, in time, make them more tolerable 
and easy; as is expressed in the following, 
" Fortitur ferendo vincitur malum quod evi- 
tare non potest," and by the English adage, 
V what can't be cured, must be endured," or 
" of a bad bargain we should make the best," 

" Of all those sorrows that attend mankind, 
With patience bear the lot to thee assign'd ; 
Nor think it chance, nor murmur at the load ; 
For know, what man calls fortune, is from God." 

Inimicus et invidus Vicinorum Oculus. 

An enemy and an envious person is an 


( 97 } 

eye over his neighbour, watching narrowly 
into his conduct ; but if known to be so, he 
may be highly useful to him by putting him 
on his guard : knowing he is watched by one 
who is disposed to put the worst construction 
upon his actions, he will be so cautious, as to 
give him as little opportunity as possible of 
doing him an injury : he, therefore, may be 
said also to afford an additional eye to his 
neighbour ; which is the more direct meaning 
of the adage. 

Lucrum malurn (Equate Dlspendio. 

Gain gotten by unfair means is no better 
than a loss; "what is ill gotten rarely 
thrives." Those who are in too much haste 
to acquire riches, generally commit some error 
in the process which defeats their purpose; 
or, if they obtain what they sought for, they 
have rarely the discretion to use it properly. 
" Hasty climbers have sudden falls." The 
wealth that is ill-gotten becomes a canker, and 
corrodes and destroys what it is put in contact 
with. " Una pecora rognosa, ne guasta cen- 


( 98 ) 

to," " one bad sheep spoils the flock. " The 
too eager pursuit of any thing, Feltham says, 
"hinders the enjoyment; for it makes men 
take indirect ways, which though they pros- 
per sometimes, are hlessed never. Wealth 
snatched up by unjust and injurious ways, 
like a rotten sheep, will infect thy healthful 

Scindere Glctcicm. 

" Romper il giaccio," " to break the ice ;"' 
any one beginning a discourse or business 
which had been long expected, or commenc- 
ing a conversation when a company has for 
some time sat silent, is said to have broken the 

In Flammam ne. Manum injicito. 
Do not thrust your hand into the fire. Whv 

V / 

should you embroil yourself in a contention 
in which you have no concern ? why put 
yourself into hot water; know you not, that 

" Those who in quarrels interpose 
Must often wipe a bloody nose?" 

" DC 

( 99 ) 

*' De los faydos guarte, no seras testigo ni 
parte," keep clear from broils, either as witness 
or party. 

Testudineus Gradus. 

A snail's pace, he moves slower than a snail, 
or is fit to drive snails, are phrases applied to 
persons who are extremely sluggish. " Vi- 
cistis cochleam tarditate." 

Sine Pennis volire haud facile est. 

11 Non si puo volar senza ale," " he would 
fain fly, hut he wants wings," is said of per- 
sons attempting to do what is much beyond 
their power or capacity ; who speak authori- 
tatively, without having a right to command 
or po\ver to enforce obedience. It may also 
be said of any one in excuse for not having 
done what was expected of him, but which 
he had not the necessary means for accom- 
plishing. "II ne faut pas voler avant que 
d 'avoir des ailes." 


Murls in Morem. 

Living like the mouse, upon the property 
of others. Plautus makes his parasite say, 
"Quasi mures, semper edimus alienum cibum," 
like the mouse, we always feed upon what 
others have provided. ' 

Obtrudere Palpum. 

To deceive with soft speeches. " You must 
not think," the sycophant says in Plautus, 
" to cajole me with honied words, who am 
used to deceive others with them." The word 
palpum means a gentle stroke or patting with 
the hand, which we use to horses and other 
animals to put them into good humour. 

Tanquam Suber. 

He is like a cork, nothing will depress or 
sink him, was used to be said of persons \vho 
had passed through great trials, or escaped 
from imminent danger without mischief. Of 


( 101 ) 

such men we say, u like a cat he has nine 
lives," or " throw him as you will he will be 
sure to alight upon his feet," " give a man 
luck and throw him into the sea." 

In Saltu uno duos Apros capere. 

" Matar dos paxeros con una piedra," 
" killing two birds with one stone;" I have for- 
tunately met with more persons, whom I wish- 
ed to see, or done more business in this excur- 
sion, than I expected. 

Duos insequens Lepores neutrum capit. 

By greedily attempting to take two hares 
together, they both of them escaped ; like the 
dog who, catching at a second piece of meat 
which he saw by reflection in the water, lost 
that which he had in his mouth. " Quien 
mucho abarca poco aprieta," " grasp all, lose 

VOL. it. H 

( 102 ) 

Tua Res agitur Paries quum proximus ardet. 

When your neighbour's house is on fire, it 
is time to look to your own. When you hear 
your neighbour traduced, and his character 
blackened, you will defend him even from a 
regard to yourself, as you may expect the 
same liberty to be taken with yours, when you 
shall be absent. Turn the mischances of others 
to your own benefit ; that is, learn from the 
failure and misfortunes of others, to attend to 
your own concerns, that you may not suffer 
the same disgrace. 

Articular um Deliramen ta. 

The dreams, or ravings of old women. "Old 
wives tales." By such titles, idle and ridicu- 
lous stories were used anciently, and still con- 
tinue to be called. 

Citius quam Asparagi coquuntur. 

Quicker than boiling asparagus, was fre- 
quently in the mouth of the Emperor Augustus, 


( 103 ) 

when he wished any business to be executed 
speedily, the asparagus requiring to be boiled 
only a few minutes ; or " Aphya ad ignem," a 
kind of salted fish, which in dressing it, re- 
quired only to be shewn the fire. 

BoniPastoris est fonder e Pecus, non deglubere. 

The good shepherd shears, but does not flay 
his sheep. The good master only exacts such 
a portion of labour from his servants, as they 
may perform without injuring themselves. 
Tiberius Caesar used this proverb, of which 
he is reputed to be the author, to restrain the 
rapacity of his courtiers, advising him to levy 
further imposts upon one of the provinces, 
which had been previously largely taxed. 
Alexander the Great, on a similar occasion, is 
said to have given the following : " Olitorem 
odi qui radicitus herbas excidat," he is a bad 
gardener, who, instead of cropping, tears the 
plants- up by the roots. The woman who 
killed the hen, that brought her a golden egg 
every day, in the hope of becoming more 

H 3 speedily 

( 104 ) 

speedily rich, falls under the censure of this 

Lucri bonus est Odor ex Re qualibet. 

The odour of gain is sweet, from whatever 
source it may he produced. To the miser, 
whatever is profitable, and to the voluptu- 
ous, whatever contributes to their pleasure, is 
deemed to be good, however impure the source 
of it may happen to be. Vespasian, who, but 
for his inordinate love of money, was one of 
the best of the Roman emperors, made use of 
this apothegm, in answer to his son, who had 
reproved him for laying a tax on certain vessels 
set in the streets, for the reception of urine, for 
the use of the dyers.* Taking a piece of money 

* That the vessels were placed for the benefit of the 
dyers, seems proved by the following, taken from a note to 
p. 1?5, of the second volume of Rabelais. 

Parisiis quando purpura praparatur, tune artifices in- 
vitant Germanicos militcs, et studiosos, qui libenter bibunt, 
et eis pnebent largiter optimum vinum, ea conditione, ut 
postea urinam reddant in illam lanam. Sic enim audivi & 
studioso Parisiensi. Joan. Manlii Libellus Medicus. 


( 105 ) 

from his pocket, which he had received from 
that impost, and applying it to the nostrils of 
his son, he demanded, " Ecquid ea pecunia 
puteret," whether he perceived any ill savour 
in it ? The same, however, might be asked of 
money obtained by robbery, murder, or any 
other unjustifiable means, and unfortunately 
we too easily excuse ourselves. 

" O cives, cives, quaerenda pecunia primum, 
Virtus post nummos." 

O citizens, let money be your first care. 
" Unde habeas curat nemo; sed oportet ha- 
bere," no one will inquire how you get your 
wealth, but if you would be respected, you 
must have it. 

Bceta turn Hyeme, turn ^Estate bona. 

The baeta is said to have been a kind of 
garment, made of skins, long, and sufficiently 
large to invest the whole body, equally cal- 
culated therefore to guard against the cold in 
winter, and the scorching rays of the sun in 
summer. The adage was applied by the an- 
H 3 cients 

( 106 ) 

cients to any objects that might be made to 
answer a variety of useful purposes : to lite- 
rature, which is both useful and ornamental 
to every age and station in life, and to philo- 
sophy, which may enable us to bear prosperity 
without insolence, and adversity without de- 

Salem lingere. 

Making a poor and slender meal ; some 
simple pulse made savoury with salt, being 
the usual diet of the poor, and such as many 
of the ancient philosophers were contented 
with. Diogenes being invited to dine with a 
wealthy nobleman, refused his offer, being 
more pleased to lick salt at Athens, he said ; 
that is, to make a frugal repast there, than to 
feed on the richest dainties. " Leaving the 
nobles, clad in purple, and their splendid 
tables," Seneca says, " I partake of the frugal 
board of Demetrius. When I hear this excel- 
lent man discoursing from his couch of straw, 
I perceive in him, not a preceptor only, but a 
witness of the truth ; and I cannot doubt that 


( 107 ) 

Providence has endowed him with such virtues 
and talents, that he might be an example, and 
a monitor of the present age. " Demetrius 
was banished from Rome, on account of the 
freedom he used in reproving the vices of the 

Velut Umbra sequi. 

Following any one as his shadow, as para- 
sites do silly young men of fortune, being 
constantly seen with them, until they have 
disburdened them of their substance, and 
then the shadow vanishes of course : or, as 
envy does men of talents. 

" Envy will merit as its shade pursue, 

And like that serves to prove the substance true." 

Quid Cceco cum Speculo. 

What has a blind man to do with a looking- 
glass, an illiterate man with books, or one 
who knows not how rightly to use them, with 
riches ? 

H 4 Mor- 

( 108 ) 

Mordere Labrum. 

Biting the lips, was formerly, and is now, 
noted as a sign of vexation or anger. "Co- 
meclens labra prse iracundia," biting his lips 
through rage. 

Priusquam Gallus iterum cecmerit. 

Before the second crowing of the cock. 
Before the invention of dials, hour-glasses, 
and clocks, the crowing of the cock was much 
attended to, as announcing the dawn, at which 
time servants were expected to rise and begin 
their labours. 

Magis gaudet quam qui Senectam exult. 

Was said of any one shewing his joy by 
uncommon expressions of hilarity. Literally, 
he rejoices more than an old man, restored to 
youth ; or, than a cripple, who has recovered 
his health and the use of his limbs. It seems 
ta have taken its origin, from observing, that 


( 109 ) 

serpents, after changing their skins, from be* 
ing dull and torpid, become extremely active 
and lively. 

Imi Subsellii Viri. 

A term of reproach, or contempt. Men of 
the lowest form or seat, where parasites, buf- 
foons, and persons of inferior condition were 
placed at the tables of the great, where they 
Avere sometimes admitted, but so placed, and 
treated, as to make them sensible, in how little 
estimation they were held. Juvenal is very 
severe, both on those inflicting, and those 
submitting, to such indignities. The phrase 
was also used to denote persons filling inferior 
situations in public offices, or of little estima- 
tion in literature. 

Canes timidi vehement ius latrant. 

" Barking dogs rarely bite," and " Brag is a 
good dog, but hold-fast is a better." Cowards 
are fond of noise and blustering, under which 
they hope to hide their baseness ; but men of 


( no ) 

courage, having nothing that they wish to 
conceal, are sedate and quiet, as the deepest 
waters flow with the least noise. Churchill 
has well depicted cowardice in the following 
lines. ^ 

" Caution before 

With heedful steps the lanthorn bore, 
Pointing at graves, while in the rear, 
Trembling and talking loud went Fear." 

Ultra Vires nihil aggrediendum. 

We should be cautious of attempting what 
we have not ability to accomplish. " A little 
wariness, prevents great weariness." The adage 
was used by Paris to Hector, advising him. 
against a personal conflict with Achilles, and 
it had been well if he had attended to the 
admonition, as he lost his life in the contest. 
It is not, however, on all occasions to be fol- 
lowed, as without trial it is not always easy to 
know how far our ability or power extends ; 
and where a great object is proposed, it is not 
to be neglected from an apprehension, inspired, 
perhaps, by timidity of its failing. " In mag- 


( "1 ) 

nis, et voluisse sat est," it is honourable even 
to have attempted a great and noble act ; that 
is, if the attempt has been persevered in with 
becomingspirit,and the failure, if it should not 
succeed, has not been owing to negligence. 
We may oppose to this adage, "Nothing ven- 
ture, nothing have." 

Sua Munera mittit cum Hamo. 

His gifts are armed with hooks, with which 
he means to catch something of equal, or su- 
perior value, as those do who make presents 
to persons much their superiors in rank and 
fortune. " C'est mettre un petit poisson, pour 
en avoir un gros," it is baiting your hook with 
a small fish, to catch a large one. The adage 
may also be applied to persons who make a 
parade of being very communicative, but are 
only so to induce those they converse with, 
to open their minds on subjects they wish to 
be acquainted with, but which should not be 
divulged to them. 

" Timeo Danaos et dona ferentes," 

Laocoon said to his countrymen, finding them 


( 112 ) 

too readily listening to a pretended deserter 
from the camp of their enemy ; I am afraid 
of the Grecians and will have none of their 
gifts. Presents from persons whom we have 
no reason to believe to be our friends, should 
be received with great caution. 

Timidus Plutus. 

As fearful as Plutus, the reputed god of 
riches. The poor having nothing to lose, have 
no dread of thieves, and accustomed to feed 
on coarse diet, they find little difficulty in 
getting what is necessary for their support. 
**' In utramque dormiant aurem, " they can 
sleep on either ear, in any posture, or on the 
hardest couch. The rich, on the contrary, are 
full of care, trouble, and anxiety. " Non so- 
lum cruciantur libidine augendi ea quae habent, 
sed etiam timore amittendi ea," they are not 
only tormented with an incessant desire of in- 
creasing their wealth, but with the fear of 
losing that which they possess. They believe 
that all with whom they have any commerce, 


( 113 ) 

are contriving to rob, or cheat them. They 
are afraid of their friends, lest they should 
want to borrow of them ; they think their 
servants are false, and that their wives and 
children are combining to deceive, and cozen 
them. Their fears increasing with their years, 
at length, though abounding with riches, they 
are distressed with apprehensions of impending 
poverty, imagining they shall become beggars^ 
or die in a workhouse. To avert this evil, they 
deny themselves necessary sustenance. " la 
Tiunc scopulum cadaverosi senes ut plurimum 
impingunt," on this rock cadaverous old men, 
men on the verge of the grave, are for the 
most part wrecked, and indeed it is not until 
they arrive at that period, when their wants 
might be supplied by the smallest income, that 
their fears make them imagine that their im- 
mense possessions will be exhausted, before 
their glass shall be completely run out, and 
they perish miserably by the very means that, 
properly used, would have preserved them in 
health and spirits. 

Mails Mala succedunt. 

A succession of misfortunes, one following 
another, as happens to some ill-starred per- 
sons, who have no sooner learned to bear one 
trouble, but another falls upon them. Hence 
it has been said, 

" Fortuna obesse nulli contenta est semel." 

" Misfortune seldom comes single." The Spa- 
niards therefore say, " Ben vengas si vengas 
solo," you are welcome if you come alone. 

Eodem Coltyrio mederi omnibus. 

Using the same argument or discourse to 
persons of different ages, dispositions, and 
faculties, is as if a physician should apply the 
same remedy in the cure of various and dis- 
similar diseases. 

Vita Mortalium brevis. 

Life is short, and the duration of it also is 
uncertain, and not, therefore, at any period of 


it, to be wasted in indolence, or in the in- 
dulgence of our sensual appetites, but to be 
employed in improving our faculties, and in, 
performing the duties of our station; in short, 
we should take care to pass the portion allotted 
to us in such a manner, that at the end of it, 
we may have as little as possible to reproach 
ourselves with. 

" To die is the first contract that was made 
'Twixt mankind and the world, it is a debt 
For which we were created, and indeed, 
To die is man's nature, not his punishment." 

Another poet says, 

" This life's at longest but one day ; 
He who in youth posts hence away, 
Leaves us i' the morn. He who has run 
His race till manhood, parts at noon ; 
And who, at seventy odd, forsakes this light, 
He may be said, to take his leave at night." 

Spenser addresses the following apostrophe 
to us. 

" O why do wretched men so much desire, 

To draw their days unto the utmost date, 
And do not rather wish them soon expire, 
Knowing the misery of their estate, 


And thousand perils which them still await, 
Tossing them like a boat amid the main, 

That every hour they knock at deathes gate ? 
And he that happy seems, and least in pain, 
Yet is as nigh his end, as he that most doth plain." 

Hippocrates, who was perhaps the author 
of this apothegm, extends it further, "Vita 
brevis," he says, " et ars longa," intimating 
that the longest life is only sufficient to enable 
us to acquire a moderate portion of knowledge 
in any art or science ; and experience shews 
the justice of his position, for even assisted 
with the discoveries of our predecessors, neither 
medicine, to which he alludes, nor any other 
art has arrived at perfection. 

Per Ignem incedis, 

Or, as Horace gives it, 

" Iiicedis per ignes 

Snppositos cineri doloso." 

You are treading on hot ashes. You are en- 
gaged in a difficult 'and hazardous business. 
"Take care," we say, "you do not burn your- 
self," or, " burn your fingers." Johnson uses 


the phrase, when entering on the lives of the 
poets, who lived near his time, or were his 
contemporaries ; meaning, that by speaking 
freely of them, and giving his sentiments of 
their works there was danger of offending their 
friends or relatives. The adage may also mean, 
as you are treading on hot ashes, that is, are 
in jeopardy, get out of the business, conciliate 
the parties whom you have offended, as soon 
as you can, as you would run or hasten over 
a floor that is burning ; the flame which is at 
present smothered, may burst out and destroy 
you. That this is also intimated, seems pro- 
bable from the following. 

Non incedis per Ignem. 

You are not walking over a furnace, which 
was used to be said to persons appearing to 
be in great haste, but who had no urgent 

Ausculta, et perpcnde. 

Listen and consider. Hear what is said to 

you, and weigh it in your mind, before you 

VOL. ir. i give 

give your opinion. Or it may be said by a 
person speaking, " Listen attentively to what 
I am about to relate, you will find it deserv- 
ing your serious consideration." 

Non statim decernendum. 

Be not in baste to give your opinion on any 
proposition, though pressed to it ever so ear- 
nestly. But be ready in all matters of moment 
to say, I will consider of it, will advise with 
my pillow. A wise man will neither give his 
assent nor dissent in anv matter of conse- 


quence, until he has sufficiently examined it, 
and discovered its tendency. 

Mortuus per Somnum, vacabis Curis. 

Having dreamed you were dead, you will 
now be free from care. Such was anciently a 
current opinion among the Grecians, as it is 
now in some parts of this country. The Spa- 
niards sa}', more properly, " De los sueHos no 
creas, ni malos, ni buenos," pay no credit to 


( 119 ) 

dreams, whether good or bad ; and the French, 
11 Tous les songes sont mensonges," all dreams 
are lies. Hence, perhaps, an opinion, that all 
dreams are to be construed as meaning the 
contrary, " After a dream of a wedding," we 
say, " comes a corpse." But this is equally as 
idle, as taking them literally. 


He hath it. He has obtained what he 
wished for, or, he hath met with his deserts, 
which last is always understood in an ill sense. 
The expression is said to take its origin from 
the exclamation of the spectators in the amphi- 
theatre at Rome, who, when they saw a gladi- 
ator wounded, were used to cry out "habet/' 
A similar expression is used among us, and we 
say, when a man in fighting receives a violent 
blow, '' he has got enough," or, " he has got 
his belly full." Simo used it, when speaking 
of his son Pamphilus, to intimate he was taken 
or caught by the fair Andiian. 

1 2 Palpo 

( 120 ) 

Palpo per cut ere. 

To tickle any one fnto a good humour. 
" To get on the blind side of any one," as we 
do of a horse who happens to have one eye 
defective, when we are about to bring any 
thing near him which would make him 
startle; also to flatter or cajole any one by 
praising the qualities of a favourite horse or 
dog, or any part of his family to whom we 
observe him to be attached. 

Suam quisque Homo Rem meminit. 

Men are in general abundantly attentive to 
their own interest; if, therefore, you wish them 
to serve you with diligence, you must make it 
their interest to do so : 

" Hoc tibi sit argumentum, semper in promptu situm, 
Ne quid expectes arnicos facere, quod per te queas." 

Be this your rule through life, never leave to 
others to perform any business for you, which 
you can do yourself: consonant to this we 
say, " help yourself and your friends will love 


you." The lark, that had made her nest in a 
cornfield, was in no haste to quit her habita- 
tion so long as she heard that the farmer de- 
pended upon the assistance of his neighbours 
and friends to get in his harvest, but when her 
young ones told her that the master was com- 
ing himself with his sons the next day ; now 
it is time, she said, to be gone, for the business 
will certainly be done. A Venetian noble- 
man, we are told, called upon Cosmo de Me- 
dicis, to inquire of him by what means he 
might improve his fortune, and received from 
him the following rules ; " Never to do that 
by another which he could do himself; not 
to defer until to-morrow what might be done 
to-day; and not to neglect small concerns." 

Qtice dolent ea molestum est contingere. 

" You touched him in a tender part," and 
brought to his memory some instance of vice 
or folly he would gladly have forgotten. This, 
however, is equally a breach of good manners, 
as it would be of humanity to tread on the 
i 3 foot 

( 122 ) 

foot of a person afflicted with corns or the 
gout, or to handle rudely any part that was 
diseased or wounded : " No se ha de mentar 
la soga, en casa del ahorcado," we should not 
mention a halter in the, house of one whose 
father was hanged. 

To live voluptuously like the Greeks, to 
be great topers. The phrase seems to have 
been used by the Romans to express their 
contempt of the soft and effeminate man- 
ners of the Grecians, particularly of that 
portion of them who had taken up their resi- 
dence at Rome, and were probably the most 
worthless of the country, who were not able to 
get a living at home. These men, we are 
told, had the art, by flattery and by admi- 
nistering to the vices of the great, to make 
themselves so acceptable that scarcely any 
favour could be procured, or even any access 
to the nobles could be obtained but through 
them. Juvenal severely censures his country- 
men for their attachment to these vermin : 


( 123 ) 

" All Greeks are actors, and in this vain town, 
Walk a short road to riches and renown. 
Smiles the great man ? they laugh with noisy roar ; 
Weeps he? their eyes with bidden tears run o'er. 
Asks he a fire in winter's usual cold? 
The warmest rugs their shivering limbs enfold. 
Pants he beneath the summer's common heat ? 
Lo ! they are batb'd in sympathetic sweat. 
In vain the Roman would contest the prize, 
For native genius arms the Greek with lies ; 
He, every moment of the night or day, 
Mimics the great in all they look or say; 
Loads their vain ear with praise that never tires, 
And all their folly, all their trash admires." 

Hodgson's Translation. 

Johnson, in his imitation of the same satire, 
has transferred the censure to the French, 
who, he seems to think, had obtained the 
same influence here, the Grecians had at 
Rome : 

" Obsequious, artful, voluble and gay, 
On Britons' fond credulity they prey. 
No gainful trade their industry can 'scape, 
They sing, they dance, clean shoes, or cure a clap ; 
AH sciences a fasting Monsieur knows, 
And bid him go to hell, to hell he goes," 

i 4 Minuit 

( 134 ) 

Minuit Prcesentia Famam. 

Intimacy lessens fame. Authors, like kings, 
will be most likely to excite a high opinion of 
their capacities by being seldom seen, or only 
by select persons ; too familiar an intercourse 
with the world breaks the charm which the 
fame of their works had perhaps raised ; they 
are found to be mere mortals, and often with 
a larger portion of folly than falls to the lot of 
even ordinary men. " How it comes to pass," 
Montaigne says, " I know not, and yet it is 
certainly so, there is as much vanity and 
weakness of judgment in those who possess 
the greatest abilities, who take upon them 
learned callings and bookish employments, 
as in any other sort of men whatever ; ei- 
ther because more is expected and re- 
quired from them, and that common defects 
are inexcusable in them ; or truly because 
the opinion they have of their own learning 
makes them more bold to expose and lay 
themselves too open, by which they lose and 
betray themselves." " A prophet," we are 


( 125 ) 

told, " is not without honour save in his own 
country," where he is intimately known, and 
where he may be oppressed, and his fame in- 
jured by the errors of his kindred as well as 
by his own. " Is not this the son of the car- 
penter Joseph?" was said of our Saviour, with 
the view of lessening him in the estimation of 
the people, when they could find nothing in 
his character to which blame could be at- 

Quod qiiis Culpa sua contraxit, majus Malum, 
or, Bis inter imitur qui suis Armis per it. 

The evil which has been occasioned by our 
own error or misconduct presseth most se- 
verely and is taken the most heavily; the 
sting and remorse of the mind accusing itself 
doubling the adversity : on the contrary, that 
which is occasioned by the treachery or ma- 
levolence of others has its alleviation ; partly 
perhaps from the mind's being diverted from 
contemplating it intensely by searching means 
of avenging it, or simply pleasing itself 


( 126 ) 

with the expectation, that it will not pass un- 
punished. " Remorse," as Dr. Smith observes 
in his Theory of Moral Sentiments, " is the 
most painful sentiment that can embitter the 
human bosom. Any ordinary pitch of forti- 
tude may bear up tolerably well under those 
calamities, in the procurement of which we 
ourselves have had no hand ; but when our 
own follies or crimes have made us miserable, 
to bear up with manly firmness, and at the 
same time to have a proper sense of our mis- 
conduct, is a glorious effort of self-com- 

" Of all the numerous ills that hurt our peace, 

That press the soul, or wring the mind with anguish, 
Beyond comparison the worst are those 
That to our follies or our guilt \ve owe." 

But the Stoics demand from us more intre- 
pidity; they tell us, and with reason, methinks, 
that we should not complain of, or sink under 
those misfortunes which we have brought upon 
ourselves; " Ferre ea molestissime homines non 
debent, qua?, ipsorum culpa contracta sunt." 


( 127 ) 

Clavam extorquere Herculi. 

Would you attempt to wrest his club from 
the hands of Hercules ? may be said to any one 
undertaking what is much beyond his capacity 
to perform. Such was anciently the reverence 
paid to Homer, that to imitate his verses was 
thought to be as difficult as to take by force his 
club from Hercules, or the thunderbolt from 
the hands of Jupiter. The adage may also be 
applied to any one entering into a contest 
with persons superior to him in fortune and 
power. " You may as well take a bear by the 
tooth." " He that meddleth with strife that 
doth not belong to him, is like one that taketh 
a mad dog by the ear." 

Tacitus pasci si posset. 

If he had eaten quietly what he had ob- 
tained ; if he had not boasted of his good for- 
tune, before he was completely in possession 
of it, he might have enjoyed it unmolested; 
but by proclaiming it he has stirred up rivals 


( 128 ) 

for the situation, with whom he will find it 
difficult to contend, and who may probably 
supplant him. The idea is taken from the 
fable of the stag who had escaped the hunters 
and eluded their search by concealing himself 
among the vines, but thinking himself safe, 
he began to browse upon the leaves ; the hun- 
ters, led to the place by the noise and by the 
motion of the boughs, took and killed him. 
Or from the crow, who, overcome by the flat- 
tery of the fox, attempting to sing, let fall the 
cheese that he held in his mouth, which the 
fox seized upon and devoured. " Can't you fare 
well," we say, " without crying roast meat ?" 

Cedro digna Locutus. 

A speech deserving to be embalmed, to be 
preserved to the latest period of time. " To 
be written in letters of gold." 

" An erit qui velle recuset 

Os populi meruisse ? et cedro digna locutus 
" Who lives, we ask, insensible to praise, 

Deserves, and yet neglects, the proffer'd bays ? 


( 129 ) 

Who is not pleased that from the bookworm's rage, 
The juice of cedar shall preserve his page?" 

The ancients were accustomed to varnish 
the leaves of the papyrus, on which they had 
committed any thing to writing, with an oil 
extracted from the cedar, which had the facul- 
ty of preserving them from becoming putrid, 
as well as of driving away noxious or devour- 
ing insects ; the oil of juniper was used, it is 
said, for the same purpose and with equal ef- 
fect. It is probable that Russia leather, used 
in binding books, owes its power of killing or 
driving away the bookworm, if it really has 
that property, to some similar ingredient used 
in its preparation. 

Cura esse quod audis. 

Endeavour to be what you are reputed to 
be, or what you are solicitous to be esteemed. 
We are all of us desirous that the world should 
think well of us, let us labour then to deserve 
their good opinion. Sycophants and flatte- 
rers might be of use to us, if, when we hear 
ourselves commended by them for qualities 


( 130 ) 

which we are conscious we do not possess, we 
should forthwith set about to acquire them. 

Equi et PoetcE alendi non saginandi. 

Poets and horses should be fed, not pam- 
pered, was an apothegm of Charles the Ninth, 
of France, said, perhaps, rather from the treat- 
ment poets have in all ages met with, than 
from his own opinion of their merit. Though 
he said it, I think, to justify the smallness of 
the present he had directed to be given to one 
of them, who had addressed a copy of verses 
to him. That poets are in a particular manner 
neglected, can hardly be said with propriety, 
as literary men of all descriptions almost, pass 
equally unnoticed. This seems to arise from 
the quiet, retired, and unobtrusive manner in 
which they ordinarily pass their lives, so that 
the world scarcely knows that they are in ex- 
istence. I speak of the most valuable and 
deserving of them, for there are, in each class, 
some who are more than sufficiently forward, 
and the little that is bestowed falls principally 

among them. 


( 131 ) 

Flet victus, Victor interiit. 

The conquered lament their hard fate, and 
the conqueror is undone : a no uncommon 
consequence of war, in which, though the 
conqueror may not be reduced to the low 
state of his opponent, yet he usually finds his 
country so weakened by the conte'st, so drained 
of men and money, that it scarcely recovers it- 
self in an age. The same often happens, on the 
termination of a suit at law. The adage took 
its rise from the result of the battle at Che- 
ronasa, in which the Athenians and Thebans 
were destroyed; and Philip, of Macedon, who 
conquered them, was soon after assassinated, 
by a young man of the name of Pausanias. 

Sapientes portant Cornua i?i Pectore, Stulti in 
Front e. 

" Wise men wear their horns in their breasts, 
in their pockets," we say, " fools on their fore- 
heads." The Spaniards to the same purport 
say, " Los locos tienen el corazon en la boca, 
y los cuerdos la boca en el corazon,'' fools have 


( 132 ) 

their hearts in their mouths, but wise men keep 
their mouths in their hearts. Fools are the 
first to proclaim their follies, or those of their 
families, which men of sense are careful to 
conceal. It is prudent to wink at some irre- 
gularities in your children, and friends, to en- 
deavour by private admonition, and reproof, 
to correct and amend them ; and though these 
should fail, you may still hope, that further 
experience, and knowledge of the world, may 
produce that change in their conduct, which 
your labours had failed in procuring. By this 
means you will often have the satisfaction of 
saving a person, dear to you, from perdition. 

Qui non litigat, Calebs est. 

The man who has a quiet house, has no 
wife. Certainly many of the Greek writers 
appear to have had a great horror of matri- 
mony, to which, perhaps, may be attributed 
the high colon ring thev gave to the character 

O v O 

of Xantippe, who was not, it is probable, so 
great a termagant as they have painted her. 
Some of their apothegms follow. 

" Mulier 

( 133 ) 

" Mulier in aedibus atra tempestas viro." 

A wife, like a tempest, is a perpetual distur- 
bance to the house. 

" Incendit omnem feminaj zelus domutn." 

The restless spirit of the woman keeps the 
house in a perpetual flame ; and 

"Muliere nil est pejus, atque etiam bond." 
Nothing is worse than a woman, even than 
the best of them. " It is better," Solomon 
says, " to dwell in the wilderness, than with a 
contentious and angry woman ;" and in an- 
other place, "It is better to dwell in the corner 
of the house-top, than with a brawling woman, 
and in a wide house." Montaigne has an ob- 
servation equally satirical : " The concern," 
he says, " that some women shew at the ab- 
sence of their husbands, does not arise from, 
their desire of seeing and being with them, 
but from their apprehension that they are en- 
joying pleasures in which they do not partici- 
pate, and which, from their being at a distance, 
they have not the power of interrupting." A 
similar idea pervades the following, by Bu- 
channan, who in the early part of Montaigne's 
life, was one of his preceptors. 

VOL. ir. K *' Ilia 

( 134 ) 

" Ilia mjhi semper praesenti, dura Neasra, 
Me quoties absum, semper abesse dolet, 
Non desiderio nostri, non moeret amore, 
Sed se non nostri posse dolore frui." 

Neasra, who treats me when present with the 
greatest cruelty, yet never fails to lament my 
absence; not from the affection she bears me, 
but she grieves that sne cannot then enjoy 
the pleasure of seeing me wretched ; which 
may be better liked, perhaps, in the following: 

" Neasra present, to my vows unkind, 

When absent, still my absence seems to mourn ; 
Not moved by love, but that my tortur'd mind, 
With anguish unenjoyed by her, is torn." 

To finish the bad side of the picture, one only 
of our adages shall be given. " To see a 
woman weeping," we say, " is as piteous a 
sight, as to see a goose go barefoot." From 
all which we learn, that as there are some tur- 
bulent and ill-disposed women, so there have 
not been wanting men, ill-natured enough to 
make them the models, from which they chose 
to characterize the sex. Hesiod more justly 
and more reasonably says, 

" Sors potior muliere proba, non obtigit unquarn 
Ulla viro, contraque malA nil tetrius usquam est. 


As the possession of a good woman, consti- 
tutes the greatest felicity a man can enjoy, so 
the being yoked to a bad one, is the greatest 
torment that can be inflicted upon him. The 
Spaniards, consonant to this, say, "De buenas 
armas es armado, quien con buena muger es 
casado," the man is well provided who is mar- 
ried to a good woman. " He that hath no 
wife," Cornelius Agrippa sayeth, "hath no 
house, because he doth not fasten (live) in his 
house; and if he have, he dwelleth therein as 
a stranger in an inn ; he that hath no wife, 
although he be exceeding rich, he hath almost 
nothing that may be called his, because he 
hath not to whom he may leave it, nor to 
whom to trust, all that he hath is in danger 
of spoyle; his servants rob him, his companions 
beguile him, his neighbours despise him, his 
friends regard him not, his kinsfolk seek his 
undoing; if he hath any children out of ma- 
trimonie, they turn him to shame, wherefore 
the laws forbid him to leave them either the 
name of their familie, the armes of their pre- 
decessors, or their substance ; and he is also, 
together with them, put back from all public 
K 2 offices 

offices and dignities by the consent of all 
law makers : this finally is the only state of 
life, wherein a man may lead the happiest life 
of all, in loving his wife, in bringing up his 
children, in governing his familie, in saving 
his substance and in encreasing his offspring; 
wherein if any charge and labour happen, and 
no state of life is without its cross, verily this 
only is that light burden and sweet yoke 
M'hich is in wedlock." 

Mendico ne Parentes quidem Amid sunt. 

Poverty has, at times, the power of destroy- 
ing even the affection of a parent to his off- 
spring. " When poverty comes in at the door, 
love flies out at the window." In extreme 
poverty, the mind is too intensely employed 
in procuring sustenance, to have leisure to 
attend to the wants of others, even our nearest 
relatives. When Mrs. Thrale reproved a poor 
girl, who was sitting, while her mother was on 
her legs, and employed ; Johnson excused 
the girl, as not owing that attention to her 
mother, from whom she only inherited misery 


( 137 ) 

and want. But poverty is not without its 
advantages. If the poor man has not the 
conveniences, so neither has he the cares that 
riches never fail to hring with them. His 
wants are few, and the labour necessary to 
supply them, preserves him in health, and 
gives him that composed and quiet sleep, 
which does not often attend the pillow of the 
wealthy. The wise man therefore says, "give 
me neither poverty nor riches." 

" Would you be free ? 'tis your chief wish, you say; 
Come on, I'll shew thee, friend, the certain way. 
If to no feasts abroad thou lov'st to go, 
Whilst bounteous God does bread at home bestow ; 
If thou the goodness of thy clothes dost prize, 
By thine own use, and not by others' eyes; 
If (only safe from weather) thou jeanst dwell 
In a small house, but a convenient shell ; 
If thou, without a sigh, or golden wish, 
Canst look upon the beechen bowl and dish ; 
If in thy mind such power and greatness be, 
The Persian king's a slave compared to thee." 

Bellum inejcpertis. 

War is approved by the young and incon- 
siderate, by those who are unacquainted with 

K 3 the 

( 138 ) 

the dreadful waste of life as well as of pro- 
perty that it occasions. " Expertus metuit," 
by men of knowledge and experience it is de- 
precated. " Iniquissimam pacem justissimo 
bello antefero," I prefer, says the sagacious 
and humane Cicero, the most impolitic and 
disadvantageous peace, to the justest war; 
and yet with what precipitancy and on what 
trifling occasions do countries often rush into 
war with each another ! if sovereigns would 


weigh the consequences, M'ould put against the 
object contended for, the numerous lives that 
must necessarily be sacrificed in the contest ; 
the number of women who would be rendered 
childless, or would lose their husbands on 
whom they, and perhaps an infant family, 
depended for their support, they would sure- 
ly not think it too much to sacrifice a 
small portion of their dignity to prevent such 
accumulated evils ; these, however, are a small 
part only of the miseries of war. They are, in- 
deed, all that this country has for many ages 
been exposed to experience. On the conti- 
nent, when an hostile army enters a country, 
what massacres, what destruction marks its 


( 139 ) 

progress ! whole towns pillaged and destroyed, 
and the miserable inhabitants put to the sword, 
or the few that escape driven into the fields, 
without shelter, without clothes, and without 
food, only preserved for a short time to die a 
more miserable death than those who perished 
by the sword. With this kind of destruction 
we have been long threatened, and who can 
tell how soon it may fall upon us ! In this 
state of things, how mortifying must it be, 
to the grave and considerate part of the com- 
munity, to see the time and energy of those 
who have the care of the government of the 
country, employed in rebutting the attacks of 
noisy and contentious pseudo-patriots; who 
appear to be moving heaven and earth to em- 
barrass the proceeding of the ministers, solely, 
it is to be feared, in the paltry expectation of 
getting into their places : strange infatuation ! 
that men of the largest property in the state 
should be most forward in occasioning its de- 
struction : surely so monstrous a procedure 
must portend some dreadful catastrophe ! 
" Quos Deus vult perdere prius dementat/' 
God first deprives of their reason those who 
K 4 are 

( HO ) 

are doomed to be destroyed. " And God har- 
dened Pharaoh's heart," we are told, " blinded 
his judgment, that he would not let the.chil- 
dren of Israel go ;" it being predetermined 
that the ^Egyptians should suffer a severe 

Mors omnibus commums. 

We must all die, M'e should, therefore, fre- 
quently meditate on this our common destiny, 
which is equally incident to the young and 
the old, the strong and the weak ; no age, no 
state of health affording security against the 
stroke of death. Whence is it then, that we 
treat this common guest as a stranger, and 
appear to be surprised when he has taken from 
us any near relative or friend ? In this town 
we have a regular yearly account of the num- 
ber of deaths that occur within a certain dis- 
tance ; this, besides the purpose of recording 
the diseases which occasion the greatest de- 
struction, for which it seems to have been ori- 
ginally formed, should have the further use of 
familiarizing us with death, and as it appears 


( 141 ) 

that from 18 to 20,000 persons die yearly 
.within the compass of a few miles, it ought 
not to seem extraordinary that ourselves, or 
any of our families should be of the number; 
it should rather be expected. A friend, con- 
doling with Anaxagoras, on the death of his 
son, and expressing a more than ordinary 
concern on the occasion, was told by that 
philosopher, " Sciebam mortalem me genuisse 
filium," " that he had never thought his son 
to be immortal." And Xenophantes receiving 
similar intelligence, hearing that his son died 
fighting bravely for his country, said, " I did 
not make it my request to the Gods that my 
son might be immortal, or that he should be 
long lived, for it is not manifest whether this 
was convenient for him or no ; but that he 
might have integrity in his principles and be 
a lover of his country, and now I have my 
desire !" 

" The time of being here we style amiss, 
We call it life, but truly labour 'tis." 

These men, therefore, it may be presumed, 
had well considered the subject. From the 
aversion that many persons have of speaking 


( 142 ) 

or thinking of death, it would seem as if they 
thought that by such meditation they should 
accelerate its approach ; but it would proba- 
bly have the contrary effect, for as a large por* 
tion of the diseases and deaths of such as live 
to an adult age are occasioned by intempe- 
rance, a serious contemplation of that circum- 
stance might wean them from their irregula- 
rities, and so prolong their lives; or if it did 
not produce that effect, it might enable them 
to meet death with firmness as a guest that was 
daily expected : 

" Fleres si scires unum tua tempora mensem, 
Rides, cum non sit forsitan una dies." 

You would weep if you knew you had only one 
month to live, yet you pass your time in 
gaiety and folly, though perhaps you may 
not live a single day. It is not meant by 
what is here said, that we should not have a 
proper relish for life, or that we should be in- 
different about its extinction ; 

" For who to dumb forgetfulness a prey, 
This pleasing anxious being e'er resigned, 
Left the warm precincts of the cheerful day, 
Nor cast one longing lingering wish behind ?" 


( 143 ) 

But as we know we must die, we should be at 
all times ready to meet our fate when the hour 

Inter Pueros Senev. 

Among children or young persons he may 
be looked upon as old or intelligent, but 
among elderly people he is considered as 
young. This was used to be said of persons 
of specious or imposing manners, who wished 
to appear more learned or wise than on trial 
they were found to be. " A doctor among 
fools, and a fool among doctors," is, I think, 
the phrase by which we designate such cha- 

Ne Jupiter quidem omnibus placet. 

It is of importance that we should well con- 
sider every project that we may engage in, 
that there be a reasonable probability of its 
succeeding and that it receive the sanction 
of such prudent and sensible friends as we may 
think it right to consult; but no measure 


( 144 ) 

however well planned should be expected to 
meet with general approbation ; Jupiter him- 
self not being able to please every one. 

Felix Corinthus, at ego sim Teneates. 

The Corinthian may, indeed, boast of the 
splendour of his city, but the soft and rustic 
beauties of Tenia please and satisfy me; may 
be said by any one, on hearing the praise of 
rank and large possessions too much insisted 
on, if he has sense enough to be contented and 
to see the advantages of a middling station. 

Tenea was a village in the neighbourhood 
of Corinth, remarkable for its mild and salu- 
brious atmosphere, and for the beauty of its 

Mala ultro adsunt. 

Misfortunes come fast enough, we need not 
seek them, which those do who enter into 
contests in which they have no concern ; or 
who " meet troubles half way," and begin 
lamenting before they arrive, the difficulty Js 


( 145 ) 

to get rid of them when present "Mischiefs 
come by the pound, and go away by the 
ounce," which seems a very indifferent imita- 
tion of " Les maladies viennent a cheval, re- 
tournent a pied," diseases make their attack 
on horseback, but retire on foot. 

De te Kxemplum capit. 

What wonder, since he only follows your 
example, may be said to parents reproving 
their children for irregularities, or faults, of 
which they are themselves guilty. 

" If gaming does an aged sire entice, 

Then my young master swiftly learns the vice, 

And shakes in hanging sleeves the little box and dice. 

In sola Sparta expedit senescere. 


Sparta is the most convenient residence for 
aged persons ; age being in a peculiar manner 
respected and honoured in that country. The 
following story from Valerius Maximus, will 
illustrate this position. It is here given from 
the sixth Number of the Spectator. 


" It happened at Athens, during the repre- 
sentation of a play, that an old gentleman 
came too late for a place, suitable to his age 
and quality. Many of the young men, who 
observed the confusion he was in, made signs 
to him, that they would accommodate him, if 
he came where they sat. The good man 
bustled through the crowd accordingly, but 
when he came to the seat to which he was in- 
vited, the jest was to sit close and expose him, 
as he stood, out of countenance, to the audi- 
ence. The frolic went round the Athenian 
benches ; when the good man skulked towards 
the boxes appointed for the Lacedemonians, 
that honest people rose up to a man, and with 
the greatest respect received him among them. 
The Athenians being suddenly touched with 
a sense of the Spartan virtue, and their own 
degeneracy, gave a thunder of applause; and 
the old man cried out, " The Athenians un- 
derstand what is right, but the Lacedemo- 
nians practise it." So the poet, 

" Credebant hoc grande nefas et morte piaudum, 
Si juvenis vetulo non assurrexerit," &c. 


( 147 ) 

Divitis Seroi mcurimk Servi. 

Servants to rich and powerful persons are 
the most abject of all servants. On account 
of the great distance there is between them 
and those they serve, they lose all estimation, 
" as the shrubs and underwood, that grow 
near or under great trees, are observed to be 
the most scrubby and feeble of any in the 
field, the trees engrossing to themselves all 
the nourishment." " Sirve a senor y sabras 
que es dolor," serve a great man, and you will 
know what sorrow is. " Cabe Senor, ni cabe 
igreja no pongas teja," do not lay a tile, that 
is, do not build a house near a lord, nor near 
a church, lest they pick a quarrel with you, 
and dispossess you of your property. 

Malum Vas nonfrangitur. 

The worthless vessel escapes being broken 
more frequently than one of more value. 
" Naught," we say, " though often in danger, 
is seldom hurt," and " ill weeds grow apace." 
The opinion that the virtuous and discreet are 


( 148 ) 

more subject to accident and misfortune, than 
the vicious, is too general not to be founded 
on observation. The good man, conscious of 
not having done, or intended injury to any 
one, is not easily led to apprehend mischief 
from others, or to use precautions against the 
shafts of malice, which he cannot suppose to 
be levelled at him ; but the vicious man, 
knowing he has deserved, is constantly on his 
guard against the enmity of those whom he 
has injured or provoked. This habit of watch- 
fulness and attention to his safety, occasions 
him not only to escape the injuries which 
persons less wary meet with, but to obtain a 
larger portion of the goods of the world, than 
fall to the lot of persons more deserving, but 
who are less active and vigilant in using the 
means necessary for acquiring them. Or the 
adage may be explained in this way : we set 
snares for the Canarybird, the Groldfinch, and 
other birds of song, and having taken them, 
we confine them in cages ; but the Sparrow, 
the Swallow, and many others, that neither 
contribute to our amusement, nor are used at 
our tables, are suffered to enjoy their liberty. 


( 149 ) 

Malum Munus. 

An unseasonable, or improper gift, tending 
to the injury, not to the profit of the receiver: 
as a large sum of money to voung persons, 
which they, not knowing how to use properly, 
often apply in such ways, as to become de- 
structive to their health, their morals, and 
their fortunes ; authority, to ignorant and in- 
experienced, or to base and worthless men, 
who will use it to the injury of those whom 
they ought to favour and protect ; or prefer- 
ment in the church, to ignorant and illiterate 
divines, who, like the ape, only become the 
more disgraced, the higher they rise. 

Vox et prceterea nihil. 

Plutarch in his apothegms tells us, that a 
nightingale being, among other things, set 
before a Lacedemonian for his dinner, when 
he was about to eat it, observing how very 
slender the body of the bird was, and com- 
paring it with the strength and beauty of hij> 

VOL, ii. i. song, 

song, he exclaimed, " Vox es et praterea 
nihil," you are all voice; the expression hence 
became proverbial, and is applied to persons 
\vho abound in words, but have little sense, 
" Q.ui dant sine mente sonum/' Cicero there- 
fore says, " Malo indisertam prudentiam quam 
loquacem stultitiam,"give me rather a prudent 
man, who, though unlearned, is silent, than a 
loquacious blockhead. For as the poet ob- 

" Words are like leaves, and where they most abound, 
Much fruit of sense beneath, is rarely found." 

Qui nescit dissimulare, nescit regnare. 

" Chi non sa fingere, non sa vivere," who 
knows not how to dissemble, knows not how 
to reign, or to live, the Italians say. This was 
frequently, it is said, in the mouth of King 
James the First, but it did not say much in 
favour of his sagacity ; and by proclaiming it 
as a principle, it must have defeated his pur- 
pose in adopting it; as it must have made 
him distrusted, even when he meant what he 
professed, " a liar not being to be believed, 


even when he speaks the truth." Lord Veru- 
lam says, " Dissimulation is but a faint kind 
of policy or wisdom, for it asketh a strong wit, 
and a strong heart, to know when to tell truth, 
and to do it. Therefore it is the weaker sort 
of politics that are the great dissemblers." 

Pingere sub Gladio. 

To paint with a sword hanging over one's 
head ; metaphorically, to perform any business 
requiring thought and reflection in the midst 
of difficulty and danger, or in the hurricane 
and disquiet of a scolding wife, and noisy 
children. Protogenes is said to have painted 
one of the finest of his pictures, while the city 
in which he dwelt was besieged, and in daily 
expectation to be taken by storm ; a rare in- 
stance of coolness and presence of mind, and 
which is said to have given rise to the adage. 

Tuts te pin gam Coloribus. 

I will paint you in your proper colours, 

that is, I will describe you as you are, that 

L 2 your 

your friends may see with what sort of man 
they have to do : with us, the expression is 
always used in a bad sense. 

Nil act um reputans, si quid superesset 

Esteeming what is done as nothing, while 
any thing remains to be performed. It is a 
.mark of a strong and vigorous mind, not to 
tire in the pursuit of an object we have deter- 
mined to attain, as it is of imbecility to give 
up the chace, deterred by obstacles, whicli 
perseverance might enable us to surmount. 
Should the obstacles opposing the completion 
of our design, prove to be insurmountable, if 
they are such as could not be foreseen or 
known, but from experience, the failure will 
reflect no disgrace, and it is better " magnis 
excidere ausis," to fail in attempting what was 
great and noble, than by a too timid, and 
cautious conduct, to continue in indigence 
and obscurity. 


( 153 ) 

Nihil de Vitdlo. 

But where is the yolk, was used to be said 
to persons reserving to themselves the best 
part of any viands, or other things, of which 
they had the distribution. A man dreamed 
he had found an egg. A soothsayer who was 
consulted to interpret the dream, told him 
that it portended he should find a treasure, 
the white of the egg representing silver, the 
yolk gold. The event corresponding with the 
prediction, the man took to the seer, some of 
the pieces of silver ; but what, said the seer, 
is become of the yolk ? which thence became 

Astutior Coccyce. 

More crafty than the cuckoo. The cuckoo 
is never at the pains of building a nest, but 
having found one belonging to some other 
bird, fit for her purpose, she throws out the 
eggs she finds in it, and deposits her own in 
their place. The owner of the nest, not per- 
ceiving the fraud, hatches the cuckoo's egg, 
L 3 

and nurtures the young one, thus freeing 
its mother from all care for her offspring. 
The cuckoo is a bird of passage ; it appears 
in this country in the month of April, and 
leaves it in June. The female lays only a 
single egg, usually in the nest of the hedge- 
sparrow, as we learn from the following distich. 

" The hedge-sparrow fed the cuckoo so long, 
That she had her head bit off by her young." 


To live a debauched and voluptuous life, 
like the Corinthians. Corinth of old, like 
Venice in modern times, was famed for enter- 
taining multitudes of courtezans, and for the 
great homage that was paid to them. They 
served as decoys to attract to the city, the 
most wealthy of the inhabitants from all parts 
of Greece, to the great emolument of the ar- 
tizans and traders, and improvement of the 
revenue of the state. Lais, one of the cour- 
tezans, was esteemed to be the most beautiful 
and accomplished woman of the age in which 
she lived. She drew visitors from the most 


( 155 ) 

distant countries, to whom she sold her fa- 
vours at a very high price. Of Demosthenes, 
who wished to pass an evening with her, she 
required ten thousand drachmas. Astonished 
at the boldness and largeness of the demand, 
he quitted her, " not choosing," he said, "to 
buy repentance at so dear a rate." 

Leporis Vltam vivit. 

He lives a hare's life. He is full of care and 
anxiety, like a hare, said to be the most timid 
of all animals, which is perpetually on the 
watch, and even in its sleep is said not to 
shut its eyes, lest it should be surprised and 
taken by the dogs. The hares, tired of living 
in a state of constant fear and anxiety, were 
determined to put an end to their existence, 
by drowning themselves. With this resolution, 
they rushed clown to a pool of water. Some 
frogs, who were near the pool, alarmed at the 
noise, leaped into the water, to avoid, the 
danger which they supposed threatened them ; 
this being noticed by some of the most for- 
ward of the hares, they stopped, and observing 
L4 to 

( 156 ) 

to their brethren, that their condition was not 
worse than that of the frogs, they desisted 
from their intention. This is one of the apo- 
logues of JEsop, and \vas meant to cure men, 
labouring under misfortunes, from thinking 
that they are more unhappy than the rest of 
mankind ; there being few so miserable, but 
they may find others equally, or more wretched 
than themselves. 

Dolium volvitur. 

A cask, when empty, may be rolled or moved 
from its place, by a slight impulse, but when 
filled, it is not to be moved but by the exertion 
of considerable force. The weak and unin- 
formed man, like an empty vessel, may be 
turned from his purpose, by the most trifling 
and insignificant arguments, or rather, having 
no fixed principle of action, he is perpetually 
wavering, and changing his designs. But the 
considerate and wise man, having, on mature 
reflection, formed a plan for his conduct, like 
the well filled cask, he is not easily to be moved 
or deterred from pursuing his object. 


( 157 ) 

" Though the whole frame of nature round him break, 
He unconcerned will hear the mighty crack." 

The adage is said to have taken its rise from a 
story told of Diogenes, the cynic. When the 
city of Abdera, in which he lived, was threat- 
ened with a siege, seeing the citizens running 
about confusedly, without order, or fixing on 
any plan for defending the place, he took the 
tub in which he lived into the market, and 
rolled it about with great vehemence, intimat- 
ing that until they quieted the tumult and 
confusion that reigned in the city, they were 
equally insignificantly and unprofitably em- 

Ne priiis Antidotum quam Venenum. 

Why take the antidote before you have 
swallowed the poison ; why so solicitous to 
purge yourself from the imputation of a crime, 
before you are accused, or why censure the 
doctrines of a book before you have read and 
considered it ? 


Jactantlus mcerent qui minus dole.nt. 

They weep most who are least concerned. 
They grieve most ostentatiously for their 
friends when dead, who regarded them least 
when living. " Curas leves loquuntur, in- 
gentes stupent," light griefs are noisy and 
loquacious, or vent themselves in tears; those 
that are more deeply felt, overwhelm and stu- 
pify : and " Hasredis fletus sub persona risus 
est," the weeping heir laughs under his mask. 
The tears of those who are greatly benefited 
by the death of the person whose loss they 
seem to lament, may be suspected of hypo- 
crisy ; weeping only to conceal their joy. " In 
our age," Montaigne says, " women commonly 
reserve the manifestation of their good of- 
fices and their vehement affection towards 
their husbands until they have lost them ; a 
too slow testimony, and that comes too late : 
we should willingly give them leave to laugh 
after we are dead, provided they would smile 
upon us whilst we are alive. Is it not enough 
to make a man revive in spight, thaj she who 


( 159 ) 

spit in my face whilst I was living with her, 
shall come to kiss my feet when I am no 

more r 

Rore vwit more Cicadce. 

He feeds, only on the dew, as the grasshop- 
per does, " like the cameleon he feeds on air," 
was used to be said, jestingly, of persons inor- 
dinately fat and florid, particularly if they pre- 
tended to be very delicate in their food, and 
to have but slender appetites, as the monks 
were accustomed to do. 

" Qui Curios simulant, et Bacchanalia vivunt. 

" You may read it," Rabelais says, "in their 
red snouts and gulching bellies as big as a 

Gallus in suo Sterquilinio plurimum valet. 

" Cada gallo canta en su muladar," " every 
cock will crow on his own dunghill." Every 
man finds himself courageous in his own 
house where he is surrounded by his family 


( 160 ) 

and friends, who will not suffer him to be op- 
pressed. " As iron sharpeneth iron, so doth 
the countenance of a friend his neighbour." 

Prcestat invidiosum esse quam miserabilem. 

" II vaut mieux faire envie que pitie*," it is 
better to be envied than pitied ;" for envy is 
the attendant on good fortune, as pity is of 
distress and misery. 

" Envy will merit as its shade pursue. 

Like that it serves to show the substance true." 

Quod non Opus cst Asse carum est. 

What you have no use for is dear at the 
price of a farthing. " Buy what thou hast 
no need of, and ere long thou shalt sell thy 

Nunc twin Ferrum in Igni est. 

Your iron is in the fire, \rork it now that 
it is soft, and you may give it what fashion 


( 161 ) 

you please ; but if you suffeT it to become 
cold, it will no longer yield to the hammer. 
Having begun the business, it must be dili- 
gently attended to or it will not succeed. 
" Bisogna battere ii ferro mentre e caldo," 
"strike while the iron is hot;" " make hay 
while the sun shines." 

Qualis Hera, tails Pedisequce. 

Such as is the mistress such will be the ser- 
vants. " Like master like man," " Qual la 
madre tal la hija," like mother, like daughter ; 
" Qual el cuervo tal su hue* vo," as is the crow 
so is the egg. It is therefore becoming those 
who have the management of the family to set 
good examples. " Madre piedosa cria hija 
merdosa," an indulgent mother makes a sloth- 
ful and sluttish daughter. 

Etiamsi Cato dicat. 

In Rome, if a very improbable tale was told, 
it was usual to say, " I would not believe it, 
even though Cato himself should tell it me," 
thus shewing the reverence paid to the me- 

( 162 ) 

mory of that great statesman and philosopher. 
The Athenians, who had the same confidence 
in the integrity of Aristides as the Romans 
had in Cato, used his name on such occasions. 
We more commonly say, " though an angel 
should affirm it we would not believe it." 

Destitutus Ventis, Remos adhibe. 

When it is calm you must use your oars. 
If one project prove unsuccessful you must 
not despair, but have recourse to other means 
which may prove more productive. " Post 
malam segetem serendum est," though the 
harvest has failed this year, you must conti- 
nue your exertions in the hope you may speed 
better the next ; " worse luck now, better 
another time :" though the Spaniards say, 
" Contra fortuna, no vale arte ninguna," there 
is no use in striving against ill fortune. 

Pariter Remum ducere. 

As you have entered into the same vessel 


you must row together, as the boat will not 
go on smoothly and regularly unless you move 
your oars in concert : so neither must you 
expect any business in which you are engaged 
to succeed, unless all the parties concerned 
are agreed as to the manner of proceeding, 
and will act together. 

Ut Lupus Ovem amat. 

He loves him as the wolf loves the sheep; 
or, " as the devil loves holy water." This may 
be said of any one pretending a regard for 
the interest of a person whom he is endea- 
vouring to undermine and would destroy. 

Vlam qui nescit ad Mare, eum oportet Amnem 

Let him who knows not the way to the sea 
take a river for his guide; that is, let him fol- 
low the course of a river, which, though per- 
haps by a circuitous route, will at length lead 
him there ; the sea being the common recep- 

( 164 ) 

tacle or reservoir into which nearly all rivers 
pour their contents. Or let those who wish 
for information on any subject on which they 
are ignorant inquire of those who are ac- 
quainted with them, however humble their 
situation : much useful knowledge being often 
to be obtained by conversing with the very 
lowest of the people ; as in mechanics, hus- 
bandry, gardening, Sec. 

Presens abest. 

Though present he is absent. This was said 
of persons who, engaged in thought, paid lit- 
tle or no attention to what was said or done 
in their company, which led them often into 
great absurdities. M. Bruyere in his Carac- 
teres, ou Moeurs de ce Siecle, has given an ex- 
cellent description of an absent man, but too 
much in detail, though perhaps there may be 
but few of the instances he produces, which 
may not have occurred. It is admirably 
abridged in one of the papers of the Spec- 


( 165 ) 

Magistratum gerens, audi et justt et injustl. 

Being in office, it is your duty to hear all 
that can be said on the business before you by 
either party, before you decide on its merit. 

" Qui statuit aliquid, parte inaudita altera, 
JEquum licet statuerit, haud aequus est." 

He who determines a cause without hearing 
both the parties, though he passes a just sen- 
tence, acts unjustly. 

Avarus nisi quum moritur nil rectb facif. 

The covetous man begins to be considered 
with complacence when he ceases to exist, or 
never does well until he dies; they are like 
swine, e< which are never good until they come 
to the knife." The prodigal who dissipates 
his fortune by living voluptuously, easily con- 
ciliates to himself the friendship or kindness 
of the persons with whom he associates ; he 
contributes to the support of those who fur- 
nish him with the means of enjoying his di- 
versions and amusements ; he shares his for- 

VOL. ii. M tune 

( 166 ) 

tune with his friends, his servants, and his de- 
pendants : he is therefore usually spoken of 
with complacency. " He is a generous, liheral, 
open-hearted fellow, and no one's enemy but 
his own ;" and when his fall is completed, 
even those who suffer mingle some regret for 
his misfortune, with the concern they feel for 
their own loss. But the covetous man neither 
meets with, nor is entitled to the same consi- 
deration from the world : even the most 
harmless of them, those who either came to 
their fortune by inheritance, or who have ac- 
quired it by fair dealing, as they use it exclu- 
sively for their own benefit, are hardly looked 
on as forming a part of the community in 
which they live ; no one interests himself in 
their welfare ; their success is not congratu- 
lated, nor their losses commiserated. " The 
prodigal robs his heir, the miser himself." 

" When all other sins are old in us, and go upon crutches. 
Covetousness does but then lay in her cradle. 
Lechery loves to dwell in the fairest lodgings, 
And covetousness in the oldest buildings." 


( 167 ) 

Par Pari referre. 

" Like for like," or " one good turn deserves 
another;" we say also, " give him a Rowland 
for his Oliver." Dionysius, having engaged a 
musician to entertain his company, to induce 
him to exert himself he promised to give him 
a reward proportioned to the amusement he 
should afford his guests ; the singer, in the 
hope of obtaining a splendid present, selected 
some of his choicest pieces of music, which 
he performed with such excellent skill as to 
give entire satisfaction to the audience : on 
applying for his pay, he was told he had al- 
ready received " par pari," like for like. The 
pleasure he had enjoyed in expecting the re- 
ward, balancing that which the company had 
received in hearing him sing; he had also the 
further satisfaction of hearing his performance 
highly extolled, which is too often the only 
emolument that men of genius are able to ob- 
tain for their labours. 

it 2 Volam 

( 168 ) 

Volam Pedis ostendere. 

" To shew a light pair of heels." The phrase 
is applied as a reproach to persons leaving 
their posts and flying from the enemy instead 
of fighting. 

JBona Nemini Hora est, quin allcui sit mala. 

" One* man's meat is another man's poi- 
son." One man's loss is another's gain, 
or one man makes a fortune by the ruin of 
another : this is universally the case in war, 
and not unfrequently in law likewise. 

Noli Equi Denies inspicere donati. 

" A caval donato non guardar in bocca."' 
It. " A cheval donn6, il ne faut pas regarder 
aux dens." Fr. " We must not look a gift- 
horse in the mouth." Presents are not to be 
esteemed by their costliness, but by the inten- 
tion of the donor. " Aliquando gratius est 


( 169 ) 

quod facili, quam quod plena manu datur," 
what is given freely and without solicitation, 
is more acceptable than a more Valuable and 
expensive present, that was not obtained with- 
out great entreaty. 

Munerum, Animus optimus est. 

The goodwill and intention of the donor, 
constitutes the principal value of the gift. 
Xerxes found a draught of water, present- 
ed to him by a soldier in the field of battle, 
of inestimable value. 

, Fabarum Arrosor. 

A devourer of beans. The man is become fat, 
was used to be said, by feeding on beans. Ap- 
plying it to persons who had accepted a bribe, 
to put in his bean, which was their mode of 
voting, in favour of one of the candidates for 

O ' 

a public office or magistracy. The manners 
therefore of the present times, if they are not 
mended in this respect, are not worse than 
they were formerly. 

M 3 Undarum 

( 170 ) 

Undarum in Ulnis. 

Persons were said to be up to the elbows in 
the sea and striving with them against the 
Avaves, who were contending with difficulties 
which threatened to overwhelm them. A sU 
milar phrase is used by us, speaking of persons 
who have more than sufficient employment, 
" he has his hands full," we say, or " he is up 
to the elbows in business." 

Hodie nihil succedit. 

Nothing has succeeded, or prospered with 
me this day. This, many among the com- 
mon people were apt to suppose, proceeded not 
from their having omitted some necessary 
caution, but from their having begun the work 
on an unlucky day ; and there are now, as 
there were formerly, persons who esteem cer- 
tain days to be unfortunate in which no new 
business should be attempted. 


( 171 ) 
Trochl in morem. 

Like a top which is always turning round 
and changing its situation. The adage may 
be applied to persons of versatile dispositions, 
who have no fixed design, or intention, they 
will now be parsons, lawyers, soldiers; or as 
Andrew Borde describes our countrymen, 

" I am an Englishman, and naked I stand here, 
Musing in my inind, what raiment I shall wear; 
For now I will wear this, and now 1 will wear that, 
And now I will wear, I cannot tell what." 

Borde lived in the early part of the sixteenth 
century ; we are now doubtless changed, and 
become more steady. There are many other 
apothegms censuring this mutability of dis- 
position, from which the following only is 

Chamteleonte mutabilior. 

More changeable than the chameleon, 
which was supposed, though not truly, to 
assume the colour of every object it ap- 

w 4 Us us 

Usus est alt era Natura. 

" Use, or custom, is a second nature." It 
is of importance, therefore, in the education 
of children, to prevent their acquiring habits 
that are ungraceful or vicious ; as whatever 
watchfulness or care may be afterwards used, 
it will be almost impossible to dispossess them- 

Timidi Mater nonjlet. 

The mother of the coward does not weep, 
that is, does not often lament the untimely 
death of her son, or that he has met with any 
sinister accident, as he will be careful to keep 
out of the way of danger, which the brave 
and courageous is continually affronting, and 
so falls early. 

Nemo sibi nascitur. 
" Non sibi sed toti mundo se credere natum." 

No one is born, or should think himself 
born, solely for himself. The helpless state 


( 173 ) 

in which we are produced into the world, 
might teach us this maxim, or should we 
happen to forget it, a very slight fit of sick- 
ness would be sufficient to bring it back to 
our memories. But even in health we are 
none of us able, without the assistance of 
others, to prepare every article necessary 
for our comfort, or even for our subsistence. 
Every thing we wear, and every thing we eat 
or drink, requiring the concurrence of several 
hands, to make them fit for our use. This 
doubtless was intended by Providence to en- 
courage mutual benevolence. As we were in- 
debted in early life to our parents, teachers, 
and friends, for our maintenance, and for all 
the knowledge that was instilled into us, it 
becomes our duty to shew our sense of the 
obligation, by doing every thing in our power 
that may contribute to their comfort, and by 
giving the like assistance to those who may 
have similar claims upon us. The chain link- 
ing us together, is by this means kept entire, 
and we become what nature intended, social 
beings. Plato is said to have first promul- 
gated this adage, "Each of us owing," he 


( 174 ) 

says, " a portion of our time, and of our exer- 
tions, to our country, to our parents, and to 
our friends." 

Quod procedere non potest, recedit, and 
Non progredi est regredi. 

Nothing in this world is stationary, every 
thing tending to improvement, or deteriora- 
tion. The land that by culture is brought to 
produce a plentiful return of grain, if neglect- 
ed, soon becomes barren, or is covered with 
weeds. The skill and knowledge that is ac- 
quired by assiduous study, is only to be re- 
tained by continued application, and the for- 
tune which industry has accumulated, to be 
preserved by exertions similar, in a great mea- 
sure, to those by M'hich it was obtained. This 
seems agreeable to the scheme of Providence, 
inviting, or rather impelling us to a life of 
activity, which is equally necessary for the 
preservation of our morals, and our health. 
" When things are at the worst they will mend," 
that is, a change will take place, which, in that 
case, cannot but be for the better. On the 


( 175 ) 

other hand, when they have attained the 
highest state of perfection, then ought we, 
from the known mutability of human affairs, 
to fear a reverse, for " what can no further 
advance, must recede," as it is expressed in 
the Latin adage, which gave birth to these 

Polycrates, the tyrant of Samos, having 
been for many years successful in all his wars, 
and transactions of every kind, and acquired 
an immense increase of territory, and wealth, 
was advised by Amasis, the king of Egypt, 
his friend and ally, from a persuasion that 
such unexampled good fortune must suffer a 
reverse, to part with something of great value, 
and which he esteemed highly, to avert the 
disaster which he believed threatened him. 
He accordingly threw into the sea a ring, 
containing the richest jewel that he possessed. 
A short time after, a fish being sent to him as. 
a present, the ring was found in its stomach, 
and restored to its master. Amasis, being 
now convinced that Polycrates was devoted 
to destruction, would have no further league 
with him. The story adds, that he was some 


( 176 ) 

time after treacherously murdered at Mag- 
nesia, by the order of Oroetes, the governor, 
at whose house he was on a visit. 

Laudatur et alget. 

Though he is abundantly commended, still 
he is suffered to live in indigence. It is an 
old, and too well founded complaint, that the 
good man frequently fails in meeting with 
that encouragement and assistance, to which, 
by his worth, he seems entitled ; nay, that he 
has often the mortification of seeing persons, 
of no very nice honour, or who are even ma- 
nifestly deficient in moral qualities, intercept- 
ing those emoluments, which should be the 
reward of uprightness and justice. But the 
man who is thus rewarded, was active and in- 
dustrious, and had merited the preference that 
was given him, by performing some service 
that was grateful, useful, or even necessary to 
the person through whose means he obtained 
his advancement ; while the good man, who 
was overlooked, might probably want that 
assiduity, or ingenuity, which are necessary 


( 177 ) 

to enable us .to- be useful to ourselves, or 
others. The preference that is said to be given 
to men of bad characters, is not given them 
on account of their evil qualities, but for 
having cultivated their talents, and rendered 
themselves serviceable ; neither are the good 
passed over on account of their virtues, but 
for not having acquired those qualities which 
are necessary to make their virtues conspi- 
cuous, and which, if possessed, would enable 
them to demand the assistance they complain 
is withheld from them. The earth yields its 
productions, not in proportion to the good or 
bad characters of the possessors, but to the 
greater or less degree of knowledge and in- 
dustry, that have been displayed in its culti- 

" The lucky have their days, and those they choose, 
The unlucky have but hours, and those they lose." 

Is it not likely, that activity and ingenuity 
often supply the place of kick, or fortune, and 
that those who complain they are unfortunate, 
or unlucky, are in reality only stupid, or in- 
dolent ? and perhaps, this is oftener the case, 
than we are willing to confess. 


( 173 ) 

Barbce tenus sapient es. 

You know them to be wise by their beards. 
This was used to be applied to persons who 
placed all knowledge and goodness in dress, 
and external appearance, or in the perform- 
ance of certain ceremonies. "I fast twice a 
week," said the Pharisee, " and give tithes of 
all I possess," but he was not accepted. " Si 
philosophum oporteat ex barba metiri, hircos 
primam laudem ablaturos," if the beard made 
the philosopher, then the goat would have a 
just right to that title, or as the Greek epi- 
grammatist has it, 

" If beards long and bushy true wisdom denote, 
Then Plato must yield to a shaggy he-goat." 

" At non omnes monachi sunt, qui cuculo 
onerantur, nee omnes generosi, qui torquem 
gestant auream, aut reges, qui diadernate in- 
signiuntur;" but all are not monks who wear 
a cowl, or gentlemen who are decorated with 
golden chains, or kings who are crowned. 
Those only in reality deserve the titles, who 
act consistently with the characters they as- 
sume. " For there are many who talk of Robin 


( 179 ) 

Hood, who never shot with his how." "Diga 
barba qua haga," let your beard advise you ; 
that is, let it remind you that you are a man, 
and that you. do nothing unbecoming that 

Gallum habeas Amicum, non Vicinum* 

"Ayez le Francois pour ton ami, non pas 
pour ton voisin," have the French for your 
friend, not for your neighbour. But at this 
time, viz. 1812, it is as dangerous to have 
them for friends, as for neighbours, nothing 
being more fatal than to have the honour of 
being numbered among their associates, or 
allies, as under that title or pretence, they will 
take upon them the entire management of 
your country. The Apennines have not been 
found a sufficient barrier, to prevent their fra- 
ternising (a term they have adopted) with the 
Spaniards. In 1809, they invited the king of 
Spain, and his son, to their camp, pitched on 
the borders of the country, to adjust, as they 
pretended, some matters of difference between 
them, but, possessed of their persons, they 


( 180 ) 

transported them to the interior of France, 
where they have been detained ever since. In 
the mean while they have been carrying on a 
destructive war in Spain, treating the inha- 
bitants who resisted them as rebels, and oblig- 
ing many thousands of them to enter into 
their armies, and to fight for them in far dis- 
tant countries. They have likewise given to 
Spain, as king, one of the brothers of Buona- 
parte, the present governor, or emperor, as he 
has forced the world to acknowledge him, of 
the French. The Spaniards, aided by the forces 
of this country, are making a vigorous oppo- 
sition to them, and may they in the end be 
successful in driving them from their terri- 
tories ! an event, which is rather to be hoped 
than expected. 

Beneficium accipere est Libertatem vendere. 

Remember, when you receive an obligation, 
you part with your liberty. To admit this in 
its full extent, would be to destroy the most 
pleasing, as well as the most useful intercourse 
among men, that of mutually aiding each 


other by advice and other good offices. It 
refers, therefore, only to those who receive 
favours, without endeavouring to make any 
return; to persons of mean and grovelling 
dispositions, who would live on the bounty of 
others, without using any exertions to procure 
sustenance for themselves. Such men truly 
sell themselves, and must suffer 1 all the morti- 
fications, and insults, that those on whom they 
are dependent, may choose to inflict. 

Dos est magnet, Parentum Virtus. 

The virtue of the parent is a passport through 
life to the child. Parents are particularly called 
upon to be careful of their conduct, and not 
to do any thing that may degrade them, or 
any way impeach or injure their moral cha- 
racter : not only that the minds of their chil- 
dren may not be corrupted by their ill ex- 
ample, but that the estimation in which they 
are held, may procure for their offspring, the 
countenance of their friends, when they shall 
be gone. " I have been young," the Psalmist 
s^ays, " but now am old, yet never saw I the 

VOL. ir. N righteous 

( 182 ) 

righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging their 

Dttlcis inevpertis Cultura potent is 
Expert us mctuit. 

To the inexperienced, the patronage of the 
great and powerful is desirable; to those 
better acquainted with men and things, it is 
rather to be dreaded than courted. Youth is 
flattered by the attention of persons of supe- 
rior rank and fortune; but those more ac- 
quainted with the world, know that the great 
rarely admit their inferiors to familiarity with 
them, but with a view to their own interest. 
They want, it is likely, their assistance in 
some business or other, and the intimacy ge- 
neralty lasts only so long as they are able to 
be serviceable to them. " Eat no cherries with 
great men, for they will cast the stones in 
your eyes." " Like fire, at a distance they give 
warmth, but if too near they burn." " They 
forget," Sir Walter Raleigh says, " such as have 
done them service, when they have obtained 
u'bat they wished for, and will rather hate 


( 183 ) 

them for having been the means of their ad- 
vancement, than acknowledge the favour." 
Does not this, however, often happen through 
the imprudence of the client, from his forget- 
ing the inferiority of his situation, and affect- 
ing an equality, which cannot but be oifensive? 
and our proverb avers, that "familiarity breeds 

Necessitas Magistra. 

" Necessity is the mother of invention, and 
the most powerful provoker of industry, and 
ingenuity. " La n^cessite" n'a point de loi," 
and " La necessidad carece de ley." " Neces- 
sity has no law," and " Hunger will break 
through stone walls." 

" Ingenii largitor venter, 

Cautum e rudi reddit magistra necessitas." 

Necessity makes the dull man bright, the 
sluggard active, the unwary cautious. It 
sharpens the wit, and makes men more apt 
for instruction. 

" Jejunus raro stomachus vulgaria terabit. 
Hunger is the best cure for daintiness, "it is 
N 2 the 

( 184 ) 

the best sauce;" and " A la hambre, no ay pan 
malo;" " A hungry dog will eat dirty pud- 
ding." To these may be added the following, 

" Impletus venter, non vult studere libenter." 

A full belly does not excite to mental labour 
or exertion, and want sharpens, but luxury 
blunts the disposition to study. 


Men with beards. The term was applied 
by the Romans to persons of plain, simple, 
and rustic or primitive manners, who still 
retained the customs of their ancestors. They 
had not learned to shave their beards, which 
only began to be practised among them four 
hundred and fifty years after the building of 
the city. The first barbers, Pliny tells us, 
were introduced there from the island of 

Annosa Vulpes hand capitur Laqueo. 
An old fox is not easily to be taken in a 


( 185 ) 

.snare; age has made him cautious. The 
proverb may be applied to persons attempting 
to impose upon us, and to excite compassion 
by the relation of some affecting but impro- 
bable story. " Quaere peregrinum," tell your 
tale to one less acquainted with you, or 
with the circumstances you are relating; they 
will gain you no credit here. " A otro perro, 
con esse huesso," throw that bone to another 

Quod de quoque Viro, et cut dicas sape ca-ceto. 

We should be careful not to speak ill of 
any one who is absent, particularly in mixed 
companies, as some of the parties may know 
the person who is censured, and may either 
resent the affront, or report to his friend what 
had been said to his discredit. 

Sat cito, si sat bene. 

" Soon enough, if well enough," was an 
apothegm frequently in the mouth of Cato. 
N 3 When 

( 186 ) 

"When we are shown any work of art, we do 
not inquire bow long it was in performing, 
but how well it is executed. If it is com- 
plete, and excellent in its kind, we readily 
give due commendation to the artist, whether 
it was struck off at a heat, or effected with 
much labour, thought, and attention. 

Non est Remedium adversus Sycophants 

There is no remedy against slander, it 
shquld therefore be borne quietly, and treated 
with contempt. What, if 1 have not deserved 
it ? Then it will be the more easily borne. 
When a Roman patrician was ordered by the 
Emperor Tiberius to die, his friends in lament- 
ing his doom, dwelt strongly on the injustice 
of the sentence. That, said he, my fi iends r is 
my greatest consolation; ye do not surely 
wish that I had been guilty. 

" Latrantem curatne alta Diana canem ?" 

Is the moon disturbed at the barking of a 
dog? let them scoff, slander, abuse, wrong, 


( 187 ) 

curse and swear, feign and lye, when they 
have done all, innocency will vindicate itself, 
and " a good conscience is a continual feast." 

Bceotum crasso jurares Acre natum. 

You would swear he was a native of Bceotia, 
a country famed for its thick and foggy air, 
and for the stupidity of its inhabitants. 

" Tales sunt hoininum mentes, quales pater ipse 
Jupiter, auctifera lustravit lampade terras." 

" The minds of men do in the weather share, 
Dark or serene, as the day's foul or fair." 

That most men find themselves in some 
degree affected by the temperature of the 
atmosphere, are more cheerful and sprightly, 
more disposed to gaiety, and more ready to 
enter on any business requiring mental exer- 
tion, when warmed and enlivened by a bright 
sun, and a clear and pleasant state of the air, 
than when that luminary is obscured by thick, 
foggy, and moist vapours, has not often been 
denied, perhaps by no one formally and in 
writing, but "by the late Dr. Johnson, who 
x 4 treated 

( 188 ) 

treated the opinion with contempt. It was a 
mere excuse for idleness, which every one 
would find, he says, who would set themselves 
doggedly, that is, determinedly to work. 
But this, after all, is only saying that the in- 
fluence or effects of a damp and gloomy sky 
may be successfully counteracted hy a fixed 
and vigorous resolution, not to give way to it. 
" Sapiens dominahitur astris." " The wise 
man will controul the influence of the stars." 

Poeta nascitur, nonfit. 

The poet must be born such, no art, care, 
or instruction, being sufficient to make a man a 
poet, who is not naturally blest with a genius, 
and with a turn for that divine art, the harmony 
of numbers. Art may direct and improve 
genius, but it cannot create it. The same 
may be said of every other species of science. 
By study and practice, any man may acquire 
a competent knowledge of music, of painting, 
of medicine, and in mechanics, but if he has 
not genius, an inventive faculty, or power, he 
will never reach to excellence in any of them. 


( 139 ) 

In this way only can we account for the slow 
progress made towards perfection in every 
art or science. Thousands have in all ages 
been as carefully, and as completely educated 
as Newton, but the whole world has only 
produced one Newton. The same may be 
said of Bacon, and a few others who have 
shone, and still continue to shine, " Veluti 
inter ignes luna minores," like the moon among 
the smaller lights of heaven. The Spaniards 
attribute this quality to valour. " Nace 
el valor, no se adquiere," valour must be 
born with us, it is not to be acquired by 
instruction. It requires indeed to be re- 
strained, to be curbed by laws, that it may 
not degenerate into brutal violence, and so be 
employed to the destruction instead of the 
support of society. Three things are neces- 
sary, Aristotle says, to enable us to excel in 
any art, " Nature, study, and practice;" and 
the Italians say, " Nessuno nasce maestro," 
no one is born a master, or perfect in any 
art. Every man may learn to write verses, to 
draw or paint a picture, to distinguish or 
describe diseases, but to do any of these 


( 190 ) 

exquisitely, there must be present, the higher 
qualities of the mind; a superior degree of 
sagacity; a quickness in discerning the rela- 
tions objects bear to each other; a readiness 
in comparing, combining and discriminating 
actions or things, not possessed by persons of 
common understandings. Let a person not 
possessed of genius write a poem. His verses 
will be correct, but there will be no invention, 
nothing interesting; no brilliancy of thought 
or expression, nothing to surprise or dazzle. 
A painter, with moderate talents, will be able 
to produce a general representation of the 
objects intended to be imitated, you will be 
in no danger of mistaking his horses for 
elephants. But there will be no character 
either in his men or beasts, or none according 
with the subject His pictures will want 
animation ; you \vill see them without emo- 
tion, and part from them with indifference. 
A physician, though not possessed of an extra- 
ordinary portion of sagacity, may soon ac- 
quire a knowledge of the diseases that most 
frequently occur, and of the common routine 
of practice in such cases, so that he will have 


the satisfaction of knowing, when he fails, 
that his patient died " secundum artem." In 
more abstruse cases, and in those that are less 
common, he will he very likely to mistake one 
disease for another, and not perhaps discover 
his error, until the mischief is irreparable. It 
is rarely, however, that the reputation of the 
physician suffers by a blunder of this kind, 
which is buried with the patients; " for the 
earth covers the errors of the physician." 
Physicians have this advantage over the pro- 
fessors of other arts. Medicine is held to be 
a mystery, into which it would be a sort of 
impiety, for persons not initiated to pry. 
Like the Philistines for looking into the ark, 
they might be smitten with emrods, or some 
other plague. It is difficult therefore for 
persons not within the pale, to appreciate 
their value, or knowledge. The art abounds 
also, beyond all others, with technical terms, 
and he who has the skill to lard his conversa- 
tion with the greatest number of them, will 
probably be esteemed the best physician. 
There seems also an opinion, more prevalent 
than we are individually perhaps disposed to 


admit, that there is something of a fatality in 
our deaths; or in other words, that there is a 
time fixed, beyond which \ve can none of us 
continue to live. This is extremely con- 
venient to the professors of medicine, as it 
leaves them in full possession of the credit of 
curing all the sick that may happen to get 
well while under their care, and at the same 
time it takes from them all blame or responsi- 
bility when they die. " Dios es el que sana, 
y el medico lleva la plata." Though it is God 
who cures, the physician gets the fee. Thus 
we find the Canon in Gil Bias saying, " Je 
vois bien qu'il faut mourir, malgre" la vertu de 
1'eau ; etquoi qu'il ne reste a peine une goute 
de sang, je ne m'en porte pas mieux pour cela. 
Ce qui prouve bien que le plus habile medecin 
du monde ne sauroit prolonger nos jours, 
quand leur terme fatal est arriveV' I know 
that I must die notwithstanding the great 
efficacy there is in water: and although I 
have scarcely a drop of blood remaining in 
my veins, I still find myself no better, a clear 
proof that the most skilful physician cannot 
preserve our lives, when the fatal hour arrives.. 


But leaving this digression, this seems the 
most rational way of explaining the adage 
" Poeta nascitur." It is prohable, however, 
that the ancients had a further meaning. 
They attached something of divine to the cha- 
racter of the poet, who was also called vates, 
as supposing him to be the interpreter of the 
behests of the deity. The custom among the 
poets of invoking the Muses, and calling for 
their assistance in the beginning of their works, 
without doubt contributed to strengthen the 
delusion. This practice has been long since 
discontinued. Prior, alluding to the opinion 
that poets received their verse- by inspiration, 
Says, ludicrously enough, 

" If inward wind does truly swell ye, 
It must be the cholic in your belly." 

Qui Luccrna egent, infundunt Okum. 

When we have occasion for a lamp, we trim 
it and fill it with oil. Anaxagoras having 
been often consulted by Pericles, and very 
advantageously, in the government of his coun- 
try becoming old, and finding himself en- 

tirely neglected by his pupil and his former 
services forgotten, determined, by a total ab- 
stinence from food, to put an end to his ex- 
istence ; this being told to Pericles, he called 
upon and entreated him to desist from his pur- 
pose, as he had business requiring his assist- 
ance ; but the philosopher being now near 
dying, answered, " O Pericles, et quibus lu- 
cerna opus est, infundunt oleum." Thus re- 
proving him for his inattention, when he 
thought he should have no further occasion 
for his advice. The phrase thence became 

Dulce est Mlseris Socws habuisse Dolor is. 

It is a comfort to the wretched to have 
companions in their misfortunes. It is plea- 
sant, Lucretius says, standing on the shore 
to see a ship driven about by a tempest ; or 
from the window of a castle, to see a battle; 
not that we rejoice in the sufferings of the un- 
happy people in the vessel, who all of them, 
perhaps, after long struggling with the dan- 
ger, perish in the ocean ; or at the fate of 


those who are killed or wounded in the bat- 
tle : the pleasure arises from our being exempt 
from the danger in which we see so many of 
our fellow creatures immersed. The comfort, 
therefore, that we experience in having com- 
panions in our troubles, in finding others suf- 
fering pains similar to those with which we are 
afflicted, does not arise from seeing them in 
pain, but from finding that we are not singled 
out in a particular manner to bear a greater 
portion of evil than falls to the lot of 
others : whenever this does happen, it adds- 
greatly to the misery of what kind so ever it 
may be. Some men are peculiarly unhappy 
in this way ; in all public calamities, whether 
by sickness-, fire, or inundations, a much larger 
than their proportion of the evil, being sure 
to fall upon them. But upon what principle 
are we to account for the avidity with which 
people flock to be present at executions? here 
they become voluntary spectators of one of 
the most distressing and afflicting scenes that 
can be well imagined; particularly when the 
execution is attended with any additional cir- 
cumstances of horror; when the criminals are 


( 196 ) 

made to suffer the most excruciating torture 
before death relieves them from their misery, 
May we attribute this propensity to curiosity, 
to a desire to see in what manner human 
strength or courage is able to bear such an 
extremity of evil r It were much to be wished, 
that women, whose soft and delicate frames 
seem to render them unfit for such scenes, did 
not make so large a portion of the spectators 
ou such occasions, 

".I have long been sorry," Mrs. Montagu 
says, Letters, Vol. IV, " to see the best of our 
sex running continually after public specta- 
cles and diversions, to the ruin of their health 
and understandings, and neglect of all do- 
mestic duties : but I o\vn the late instance of 
their going to hear Lord Ferrers's sentence 
particularly provoked me: the ladies crowded 
to the House of Lords, to see a wretch brought 
loaded with crime and shame to the bar, to hear 
sentence of a cruel and ignominious death ; 
which, considering only this world, cast shame 
on his ancestors and all his succeeding family. 
There was in this case every thing that could 
disgrace human nature and civil distinctions; 


( 197 ) 

but it was a sight, and in spite of all pretences 
to tenderness and delicacy they went adorned 
with jewels, and laughing and gay to see 
their fellow creature in the most horrid situa- 
tion, making a sad end of this life, and in 
fearful expectation of the commencement of 

Lord Ferrers, it is known, was hanged for 
shooting one of his servants, in the year 1760. 

Fuere quondam Milesii. 

The Milesians were once a brave and hard}' 
people. " Troja fuit." The magnificent city 
of Troy once existed, though no vestiges 
even of the ruins of its walls and temples now 
remain. I was once rich and powerful, but 
am now poor, miserable, and wretched ; con- 
demned to serve where I formerly command- 
ed ; may be said, particularly at this moment, 
by many fallen potentates ; fallen, most or 
all of them, by their own misconduct and 
mistaken notions of government. For the great 
changes which have taken place in the condi- 
VOL. IT. o tion 

tion of the princes of Europe could never have 
been effected, if their self-indulgences and 
want of energy in the exercise of their high 
authorities, frequently the consequence of a 
voluptuous life and wrong principles of action, 
had not co-operated, unfortunately, too power- 
fully with the force of their conqueror and 
brought on their ruin: they were enslaved by 
their inordinate passions which led to the op- 
pression of their subjects, and was ultimately 
the occasion of losing their affections. The 
people were in the situation of the overloaded 
ass in the fable, who, when told to hasten for 
there were robbers at hand, answered, it mat- 
tered little whom he served since he must still 
carry his panniers. But to pursue rny theme: 
I was once young, strong, and vigorous, may 
be said, but am now old, feeble, and decrepid. 
These reflections, though trite, may still have 
their utility ; for as they teach us, by shewing 
what has happened, to expect reverses in our 
state, they tend to enforce upon us the pro- 
priety of using our prosperity with modera- 

The Milesians, who have long since ceased 


( 199 ) 

to be a people, were not conquered by their 
enemies, until they had left off to be strong 
and courageous ; until luxury, the conse- 
quence of their success, and opulence, had 
enervated and enfeebled them. 

Massiliam naviges. 

You are going the way of the Massilians, 
may be said to inconsiderate spendthrifts, who 
are dissipating what had been acquired for 
them, either by good fortune or the industry 
and frugality of their ancestors. The Massi- 
lians, once a brave and independent people, 
having by their commerce acquired great afflu- 
ence, became so debauched, extravagant and 
effeminate, as to fall an easy prey to the 
neighbouring states. 

Non unquam tacuisse nocet, nocet esse 

What is retained and kept in the mind can 

never injure, it may injure us to have divulged 

it. " Quien calla, piedras apana," he that is 

o 2 silent 

( 200 ) 

silent is heaping up stones; he is thinking 
how he may profit hy what others are saying; 
and " Oveja que bala bocada pierde," the 
sheep loses a mouthful when it bleats. Silence 
is the sanctuary of prudence, and properly 
used, it is one of the most valuable attributes 
of wisdom. " The fool's bolt is soon shot," he 
has little in him, and over that little he has no 
controul; he is always, therefore, saying some- 
thing that is unseasonable and improper ; he is 
precipitate in his judgment, and determines 
before he M 7 ell knows the proposition to which 
his assent is required. But the wise man is 
reserved and cautious, " he looks before he 
leaps," " thinks before he speaks/' and " even 
of a good bargain he thinks twice before he 
says done," for he knows that appearances 
are often deceitful, and that " all is not gold 
that glitters," " he has wide ears, and a short 
tongue," therefore more ready to hear the opi- 
nions of others, than to proclaim his own. 
Augustus Cassar bore a sphinx, an emblem of 
silence, on his ring, intimating that the coun- 
sels of princes should be secret. But silence 
is often adopted for very different purposes 


( 201 ) 

and from different motives : some make use 
of it, to cover their ignorance ; conscious of 
their inability to bear a part in the conversa- 
tion, they avoid venturing their opinion, and 
" wisely keep the fool within," in which they 
shew a commendable prudence ; " even a fool 
when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise, 
and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man 
of understanding." " Parla poco, ascolto 
assai, et non fallirai," speak little and attend 
to what falls from others, and you will commit 
no error. Others again are silent through 
craft, fearful lest by some unguarded expres- 
sion they should betray the part they had 
taken in some transaction, in which they 
would not be thought to have been concern- 
ed ; or that they should discover their opi- 
nion or intention, which may be the reverse 
of what they publicly profess : such men, 
to use the strong language of Churchill, 

" Lest bokl truth to do sage wisdom spight, 
Should burst the portals of their lips by night, 
Tremble to trust themselves one hour in sleep." 

Yet there is an instance on record, where 
o 3 silence 

( 202 ) 

silence is said to have occasioned the destruc- 
tion of a country, whence the following : 

Amyclas perdidit Silentia. 

Amyclas was lost by silence. The magis- 
trates of this city having been frequently 
alarmed by some of the more timid inhabi- 
tants, with reports of an enemy being at hand 
when no danger was near, ordered, under the 
penalty of a severe punishment, that no one 
should again disturb them with such rumours. 
At length, when an enemy was actually ap- 
proaching, the people not daring, on ac- 
count of the law to give the necessary in- 
formation, the city was taken. The proverb 
may be applied to any one neglecting the 
proper opportunity or time for doing any ne- 
cessary business. 

Ubi tres Medici, duo Athei. 

Where there are three physicians, there are 
two atheists. Whence could a censure so 
senseless, derive its origin ? since physicians, 


( 203 ) 

whose professions led them in a particular 
manner to examine into the properties of na- 
tural bodies, must have been among the first 
to see and admire the order, regularity, and 
beauty of their structure. 

" Presentemque refert quajlibet herba deum." 

Every herb having a signature of the divine 
Majesty stamped upon it. Need it be added, 
that the anatomy of the human, or of any 
other animal body, afforded no less pregnant 
proofs of the existence of an all- wise and 
powerful Architect; since nothing less than 
such a being could have contrived, and put 
together, such exquisite pieces of mechanism. 
But the habit of inquiring, and looking deeply 
into the nature and structure of the bodies 
they examined, might make them sceptical, 
and not ready to credit what could not be 
submitted to a similar test. They might not, 
therefore, be disposed to treat with reverence, 
the rabble of gods that disgraced the calen- 
dars of Greece and Rome ; and this might be 
sufficient to induce the common people to 
brand them with the name of atheists. Sir 
o 4 Thomas 

( 204 ) 

Thomas Brown, in his singular book, "Religio 
Medici," after defending the profession from 
the imputation of atheism, gives his own creed, 
in which, on all material points, he is suffi- 
ciently orthodox, but in matters which he 
conceived not to be essential, he carved for 
himself. Indeed, he seems to have had a very 
extended faith, and to have thought that the 
more improbable any of the tenets of religion 
were, the more merit there was in believing 
them. He was a perfect convert to the reso- 
lution of Tertullian, "credo quia impossible 
est," I believe it, because it is impossible. "I 
desire to exercise my faith," he says, "in the 
difficultest points ; for to credit ordinary and 
visible objects, is not faith, but persuasion." 
He joined also heartily in the then popular 
opinion of witchcraft. " I have ever believed," 
he says, " and do now know that there are 
witches," and he charges those who disbelieve 
in them, "as being a sort, not of infidels, but 
atheists." Chaucer does not speak very fa- 
vourably of the faith of the medical corps. 

" Physicians know what is digestible, 
But their study is but little in the bible." 

( 205 ) 
And another Poet says, 

" I have heard, how true 

I know not, most physicians as they grow 
Greater in skill, grow less in their religion; 
Attributing so much to the natural causes, 
That they have little faith in that they cannot 
Deliver reason for." 

Time, which has corrected the erroneous opi- 
nion of witches, has also released the studious 
in medicine, from the reproach of infidelity, 
and they are now allowed to have as just a 
sense of religion, as any other of the classes 
of mankind. 

Multos in summa Pericula misit, 

Venturl Timor ipse Mali. 

Men are often through the dread of some 
misfortune threatening them, so disturbed, and 
so completely deprived of judgment, as not to 
see, or be able to use the means, which, in a 
more easy and quiet state of their minds, would 
have been sufficiently obvious, and by which 
they might have avoided the evil, so that to 
standers by, they seem to have acted under 


( 206 ) 

some secret impulse, or to have been fascinated. 
It is fear that deprives the bird of the power 
of escaping the snake, if it has once caught its 
eye; not daring to turn its face from the 
frightful object, it necessarily every step it 
takes approaches nearer, and at length, depri- 
ved of all sense and power, falls into its jaws. 

" Quo timoris minus est, eo minus ferme periculi est." 

Where there is the least fear, there is, for the 
most part, least danger; though the Spaniards 
say, " Quien obra sin miedo, yerra su hecho," 
he who acts without fear, aots wrong; but 
the word miedo, fear, in this sentence, means 
only care, caution or attention. 

Rebus in adversis, facile est contenmere Mortem, 
Fortius ille facit, qui miser esse potest. 

Men of strong minds contend with diffi- 
culties and misfortunes, and frequently suc- 
cessfully, or if they cannot be completely 
averted, bear them patiently, by which means 
they become lighter, and their sting is 

blunted ; 

( 207 ) 

blunted; it is the coward only that seeks to 
escape them by death. 

" Hie rogo, non furor est ne moriare 

Is it not madness to kill yourselves lest ye 
should die ? to suffer the greatest misfortune 
that can befall you to escape a less ? But, 
with Martial's leave, this is not a right state- 
ment of the position. Men do not kill 
themselves to escape dying, but to put an end 
to a thousand cares and perplexities which 
make life a burthen to them. Agis being 
asked which way a man might live free, 
answered, " by despising death." 

" Emori nolo, sed me esse mortuum nihil estimo." 

I feel no difficulty in saying I wish I were 
dead, but I have not courage sufficient to 
embrace a voluntary death, or to put an end 
to my existence. 

Quoniam id fieri quod vis non potetf, 
Id veils quod possis. 

Since you cannot effect what you are solici- 

( 208 ) 

tous to obtain, be contented with what you 
have. That is, we should not suffer the want 
of something upon which we may have impru- 
dently set our affection, to prevent our enjoy- 
ing, and being thankful for what we actually 
possess, and we should the rather do this, as, 
if we are incapable of bounding our desires, 
the object we are in pursuit of, would, if 
obtained, contribute very little to our con- 

*' Against our peace \ve arm our will, 
Amidst our plenty something still, 
For horses, houses, pictures, planting, 
To me, to thee, to him are wanting. 
That cruel something unpossess'd, 
Corrodes, and leavens all the rest; 
That something if we could obtain, 
Would soon create a future pain." 

Venter obesus non gignit Mentem subtilem. 

An over crammed belly does not produce a 
quick, and ready wit, or " fat paunches make 
lean pates." The Lacedemonians, who were 
remarkably frugal in their diet, had such an 


( 209 ) 

abhorrence and contempt for fat and corpu- 
lent persons, that they were about to banish 
from their city, Auclides, one of their country- 
men, who, by a course of indolent and volup- 
tuous living-, had swelled himself to an enor- 
mous bulk, and were only deterred from it by 
his engaging to live for the future more 
sparingly. They would have no inhabitants 
but such as, in time of danger, might be 
assisting in repelling an enemy. 

Quid ad Farinas ? 

What profit do you expect from this, or 
how will it conduce to provide you with 
bread, to which your attention should be 
principally turned, may be said to young 
persons, who are seen neglecting their busi- 
ness, and spending their time in idle pursuits, 
in keeping loose company, in haunting tavern s ? 
playhouses, and assemblies, in reading novels 
and romances, or in taking up the trade of 
poetry, without any better call than their 
own silly conceit; a vice now very prevalent. 

" Quid me numeri tantlem ad farinas juverint?" 


( 210 ) 

Mortui non mordent. 

The dead do not bite, cannot hurt you. 
This apothegm was used by Theodore Chius, 
master in rhetoric to Ptolemy king of Egypt, 
when consulted by him whether they should 
grant an asylum to Pompey, who had landed 
on their coast, after being defeated by Julius 
Caesar. He advised them to receive him, and 
put him to death; adding, " Mortuos non 
mordere." Our more common phrase, and 
which is probably used by ruffians who deter- 
mine to murder those they rob, is, " the 
dead tell no tales." 

De Calceo solicitus, at Pedem nihil curet. 

Looking more to the fashion of the shoe 
than to the ease of the feet, which those 
persons were said to do, who paid more atten- 
tion to the diet than to the education of their 


Verbum Sapient i. 

" A buon intenditore poche parole." 

" Le sage entend un demi mot." 

" Al buen entendador pocas palabras. 

" A word to the wise." To a sensible man, 
but few words are ordinarily necessary, and a 
fool will not understand you, though you 
should give him a long dissertation. 

Tanquam meum Nomen. 

TanqUam Ungues, Digitosque suos. 

It is a subject I am as well acquainted with, 
as I am with my own name, or with my 
fingers, was used to be said to persons repeat- 
ing any well known story or circumstance. 

" Totis diebus, Afer, hcec mihi narras, 
Et teneo melius ista, quam meum nomen." 

You are perpetually teasing me with a repeti- 
tion of this story, which is as familiar to me 
as my own name. 


( 212 ) 

Mitte in Aquam, hoc est, Aufer t medio. 

A phrase for which we have no direct sub- 
stitute. Take him away, to the river with 
him. To the pump or to the horse pond, is 
sometimes the cry of the mob in this country, 
when they take upon themselves to execute 
summary justice on some poor wretch taken 
in the act of picking a pocket, or in the com- 
mission of some crime for which they con- 
ceive them properly to be amenable to their 
tribunal. But among the ancients, certain 
criminals were condemned to be tied in a sack 
and drowned, which is what the adage 
alludes to, and this kind of punishment is still 
used in Germany. Parricides in Rome were 
put into a sack with a cock, a monkey, a ser- 
pent, and a dog, and thrown into a river or 
into the sea, to which Juvenal alludes, in the 
following lines, as translated by Hodgson. 

" If votes were free, what slave so lost to shame. 
Prefers not Seneca's to Nero's name, 
Whose parricides, not one close sack alone, 
One serpent, nor one monkey could atone ?" 


Nero, it is known, caused his mother, two 
of his wives, and Seneca his tutor to be put to 

Perdere Naulum. 

" Echar la soga tras el caldero." " It is 
throwing the rope after the bucket, the helve 
after the hatchet," may be said to persons 
under misfortunes, who, instead of exerting 
themselves to recover what they have lost, 
give way to despair, and so suffer what re- 
mains of their property to be wrecked likewise. 

" Furor cst post omnia perdere naulum." 

But the adage is more immediately appli- 
cable to persons who have made an unsuccess- 
ful venture, \vho have taken goods to a 
country where they are little in request, or 
are valued at a very low price. Do not let 
them be destroyed, get, at the least, so much 
for them as will pay the freight; " of a bad 
bargain we should make the best," and, " half 
a loaf is better than no bread." 

VOL, ir. if Turpz 

( 214 ) 

Turpe siler e. 

It is disgraceful to be silent. When a man 
is conscious that he is capable of instructing 
his fellow-citizens, or those with whom he is 
connected, in any art that might be beneficial 
to them, it is disgraceful, or perhaps criminal, 
to withhold it. 

" Be niggards of advice on no pretence, 
For the worst avarice is that of sense." 

It may also be said by any one, who should 
find others not so well qualified as himself, 
acquiring honour by the practice of any art or 
profession, I must now exert myself, and shew 
these men, that it was not through incapacity, 
that I have hitherto abstained, " It would be 
disgraceful to be any longer silent," and to a 
circumstance of this kind, the adage is said to 
have owed its origin. 

Medice, cur a te ipsum. 

Physician, heal thyself. It seems but just, 
that those who profess to cure the diseases of 
others, should, as a pledge of their capacity, 
b able to preserve themselves, and families, 


( 215 ) 

from the ravages of them. But how few are 
able to give this pledge ! Practitioners in 
medicine, are neither more remarkable for 
longevity, nor for producing or rearing a more 
healthy, or a more numerous progeny, than 
those who are out of the pale of the profession. 
This, however, does not arise from the fault of 
the physician, but from the imperfection of 
the art ; for though there is no branch of 
science that has been cultivated with more 
diligence, than this of medicine, or that has 
had the advantage of being practised by men 
of greater genius, abilities, and learning, or 
who have laboured with greater industry, per- 
severance, and zeal, to bring it to perfection; 
yet they have been so far from attaining their 
object, that there are many diseases, and 
among them, some of the most frequent, for- 
midable, and fatal, for which no adequate, or 
successful methods of treatment, have been 
discovered. The treatment of rheumatism is 
at this time as various, unsettled, and gene- 
rally as inefficient, as it was 000 years ago ; 
and although so many volumes have beeu 
written on asthma, and consumption, it is to 
p<2 be 

( 216 ) 

be lamented that no satisfactory proof can be 
given, that either of them were ever cured by 
medicine. Much might, perhaps, be clone to- 
wards the improvement of the practice, if 
physicians would follow the model which 
the late Dr. Pleberden has left them in his 
Commentaries ; in my judgment, one of the 
best books which this, or any other age, or 
country, has produced on the subject. The 
College of Physicians have done something 
towards leading practitioners to this mode, 
by abolishing the vain titles heretofore given 
to drugs and compositions, attributing to them 
qualities which experience by no means war- 
rants us in believing they possess. But even 
in the complaints mentioned above, and many 
more might be added, the physician may be 
often able to give directions that may retard 
their progress, and enable the patient to pass 
his life with some degree of comfort; and 
he who limits his endeavours to procuring 
these advantages, will well deserve their grate- 
ful acknowledgments, he will also escape the 
censures so frequently thrown on the profes- 
sors of the art. " Turba medicorum perii," a 


( 217 ) 

multitude of physicians have destroyed me, 
was the inscription the Emperor Adrian or- 
dered to be put upon his monument. It would 
be useless, perhaps in some degree mischiev- 
ous, to recite the many sarcastic speeches that 
have been recorded to degrade the practice 
of mediciue. The effect they should have, 
and which, indeed, they have had on the more 
judicious practitioners, is not, on every occa- 
sion, to load their patients with drugs, which, 
when not absolutely necessary, deserve a dif- 
ferent name than that of medicines. With no 
great impropriety they may be called poisons; 
for, although they may not kill, yet if they 
nauseate, and destroy the tone of the stomach, 
and have the effect of checking and prevent- 
ing the powers of the constitution in their 
efforts to expel the disease, they cannot fail 
of doing much mischief. Baglivi, addressing 
himself to young practitioners, says, " Quam 
paucis remediis curantur morbi ! Quam pi u res 
e vita tollit remediorum farrago!" and Sy- 
denham advises, in many cases, rather to trust 
to nature, it being a great error to imagine 
that every case requires the assistance of art. 
P 3 It 

( 218 I 

It should be considered, that as there are some 
diseases for which medicine has not yet found 
out any cure, there are others for which no 
medicines are required, the constitution being 
of itself, or only aided by rest, and a simple 
and plain diet, sufficient to overcome them. 
The French therefore say, with much good 
sense, "Un bouillon dechoux fait perd re cinque 
sous au medecin," a mess of broth hath lost 
the physician his fee. That this adage is an- 
cient may be concluded from the smallness of 
the fee assigned to the doctor. The Undertaker, 
in the Funeral, or Grief a-la-mode, among his 
expenses, mentions ten pounds paid for a Trea- 
tise against Water-gruel, "a damned healthy 
slop, that has done his trade more mischief," 
he says, " than all the faculty." The Spaniards 
on this subject say, " Al enfermo que es vida, 
el agua le es medicina," the patient who is 
not destined to die, will need no other medi- 
cine than water : such is their opinion of the 
efficacy of abstinence. " It is no less disgrace- 
ful,''" Plutarch says, " to ask a physician, what 
is easy, and what is hard of digestion, and 
what will agree with the stomach, and what 


( 219 ) 

not, than it is to ask what is sweet, or bitter, 
or sour." Our English adage, which is much 
to this purport, and with which I shall close 
this essay is, " Every man is a fool or a phy- 
sician, at forty." 

Facilius sit Nili Caput invenire. 

It M r ould be easier to find the source of the 
Nile. This has in all ages been considered as 
so difficult, that the proverb was used to re- 
present something scarcely possible ever to be 
effected : this opinion was not formed until 
after a variety of experiments had been made 
with a view to its discovery. But the dis- 
tance of its head or source from any of the 
parts of Africa that had been visited or were 
known to Europeans, or to the inhabitants of 
the northern parts of that vast continent, is so 
great, and the countries lying between them 
inhabited by such numerous tribes of savages, 
that all the expeditions formed for that pur- 
pose had failed, and so many lives had been 
lost in the attempt, that the project had for 
p 4 many 

( 220 ) 

many ages been laid aside. That one of its 
sources is now known, is owing to the genius 
or industry of certain Portuguese missiona- 
ries. Mr. Bruce, indeed, assumes to himself 
the merit of having made this discovery, but 
it had been very circumstantially described by 
Lobo, in his account of Abyssinia, whose work 
on the subject was translated by Dr. Johnson, 
and by Sir Peter Wyche, in his " Short Rela- 
tion of the River Nile," translated by him 
from the Portuguese, and published by order 
of the Royal Society in 1673: perhaps a short 
extract from this little tract, which is not com- 
mon, may be acceptable. 

" One of the provinces of Abyssinia," the 
writer says, " is called Agoas ; the inhabitants 
of the same name, whether these bestowed 
their name or took it from the province. The 
higher part of the country is mountainous 
and woody, yet not without vallies and groves 
of cedars, for goodness and scent not inferior 
to those of Lebanus. In this territory is the 
known head and source of the Nile, by the 
natives called Abani, the father of waters, 
from the great collection it makes in the king- 

doms and provinces through which it passeth; 
for the greatest part of Ethiopia being moun- 
tainous and the torrents swelled in the winter, 
the mountains so transmit them as to increase 
the river, which falling into the Nile make no 
little addition to its greatness, causing it to 
run with such a stock of water as overflows the 
plains of JEgypt. This is the river the Scrip- 
ture calleth Gihon, which encompassed the 
land of Ethiopia, so doth the Nile with its 
turnings and meanders. The head rises in the 
most pleasant recess of the territory, having 
two springs called eyes, each about the big- 
ness of a coachwheel, distant from each other 
about twenty paces: the pagan inhabitants 
adore as an idol the biggest, offering to it 
many sacrifices of cows which they kill there, 
flinging the head into the spring, eat the flesh 
as holy, lay the bones together in a place de- 
signed for that purpose, which at present 
make a considerable hill, and would make it 
much bigger, if carnivorous beasts and birds 
of prey did not, by picking them, lessen and 
scatter them." 

The curious reader will be struck with ob- 

serving how very nearly the account given by 
Mr. Bruce resembles this, which is here laid 
before him. That Mr. Bruce should take no 
notice of either of these books, though it is 
scarcely possible but he must have seen or 
heard of them, is singular. 

Mr. Rennel has however shewn, in a late 
publication on the Geography of Herodotus, 
that the river, the head of which has been here 
described, is only one and an inferior source 
of the Nile, and that the largest and princi- 
pal source of that celebrated stream rises at a 
great distance from Agoas, and much higher 
up in the country, and which has probably 
never yet been visited by any European. 

The principal source of the Nile, therefore, 
remaining still undiscovered, the proverb con- 
tinues in full force. 

Terram video. 

I see land, may be said by persons getting 
nearly to the end of a long and troublesome 
business, or concluding any great work or la- 
bour; more directly, and to this the adage 
owes its origin-, by those who have been a long 


( 223 ) 

time at sea, and perhaps been driven about by 
adverse winds, on first espying the shore, 
" Thank God, I once more see land 1" an eja- 
culation which some of my readers may per- 
haps make at finding they have got to the 
end of this hook ; and it may not be less satis- 
factory to them to learn, that the writer or 
collector of this miscellany is too far advanced 
in life, to be likely to make any considerable 
addition to them. 



A a ERR A RE a Scopo 224 

Ab Incunabulis 163 

Ab Ovo usque ad Mala 230 

ActiLabores jucundi 281 

Ad Amussim 131 

Ad Concilium ne accesseris, antequam voceris 58 

Ad felicem inflectere Parietem 66 

Ad Fincm ubi perveneris, ne veils rcverti 13 

Ad pcenitendum properat cito qui judicat vol. ii. 95 

At! Unguem 131 

Adversus Solem ne loquitor 14 

yEdibus in nostris quae prava aut recta geruutur 142 

jEgroto dum Anima est, spes est vol. ii. 13 

/Equalis aequaletn delectat 43 

/Ethiopem ex Vultu judico 210 

A Fabis abstineto f) 

Albas Gallinae Filius 31 

Album Calculum addere 122 

Alicnos Agros irrigas, tuis sitientibus 67 

Alii sementcm faciunt, alii metent 119 

AUorum Medicus, ipse Ulceribus scates vol. ii. 31 


26 INDEX. 


Aliam Quercum excute 120 
Altera Manu fert Lapidem, altera Panem ostentat 177 

Altera Manu scabunt, altera feriunt 177 

Ama tanquam osurus, oderis tanquani amaturus 252 

Amens longus 54 

Amicorum communia sunt omnia 1 

Amyclas perdidit Silentium vol. ii. 203 

Anicularum Deliramenta vol. ii. 102 

Animo aegrotanti Medicus est Oratio vol. ii. 90 

An nescis longas Regibns esse Manus ? 35 

Annosa Vulpes baud capitur Laqueo 209 

and vol. ii. 184 

Annosam Arborem transplantare 89 

Ansam quaerere 105 

Ante Barbam doces senes vol. ii. 70 

Ante hac putabam te habere Cornua vol. ii. 70 

Antequam incipias, consulto 288 

Annulus aureus in Naribus Suis 162 

Anus Hircum olet vol. ii. 93 

Anus Simia serd quidem vol. ii. 22 

Aphya ad Ignem vol. ii. 103 

Apii Opus est vol. ii. 59 

A puro pura defluit Aqua vol. ii. 66 

Aquilae Senecta 205 

Aranearum Telas texere 89 

Arctum Anulum ne gestato 9 

Are varia Vulpi, ast una Echino maxima 114 

Artem qurcvis alit Terra 163 

Asinum sub Frceno currere doces 89 

Asinus inter Simias -- 115 


INDEX. 227 


Asinus in Unguento 118 

Asperius nihil est humili cum surgit in altum 153 

Astutior Coccyge vol. ii. 153 

A teneris Unguiculis 163 

Athos celat Latera Lemniae Bovis vol. ii. 64 

Avarus uisi quum moritur, nil recte facit vol. ii. 165 

Aureo piscari Hamo 265 

Auribus Lupum teneo 114 

Auro loquenti nihil pollet qusevis Ratio vol. ii. 7 1 

Aurum Tolosanum 243 

Ausculta et perpende vol. ii. 117 

Aut bibat aut abeat 225 

Aut Caesar aut nullus 6% 

Aut Regem aut Fatuum nasci oportuit 62 

BARBJE ten us Sapientes 60 

and vol. ii. 178 

Barbati vol. ii. 18-t 

Baeta turn Hyeme turn Estate bona vol. ii. 105 

Belte narras 250 

Bellura inexpertis vol. ii. 137 

Bcneficium accipere, est Libertatem vendere vol. ii. 49 

and 180 

Bis dat qui cito dat 190 

Bis interimitur qui suis Armis pent vol. ii. 125 

Bis Pueri Senes 100 

Bceotum in crasso jurares A tire natum vol. ii. 187 

Bona k Tergo formosissirna 276 

Bona magis carendo quain truendo sentimus 276 

.Bona? Leges ex mails Moribus procreantur 231 


.228 INDEX. 


Bona nemini Hora est, quin alicui sit mala vol. ii. 16'8 

Boni Pastoris est tondere Pecus, non deglubere vol. ii. 103 

Bonis vel malis Avibus 

Bonus Dux bonum reddit Comitem -^ 

Bos alienus subincle prospectat Foras 

Bos in Linua 

caeco Dux 180 

Camaelus desiderans Cornua etiam Aures perdidit 44 

vol. ii. 94 

Camelus saltat vol. ii. 43 

Canes Socium in Culina nullum amant 44 

Canes timidi vehementius lalrant vol. ii. 109 

Canis in Praesepi 221 

Canis festinans caecos parit Catulos 257 

Canlabit vacuus coram Latrone Viator 77 

Cantilenam eandem canere vol. ii. 2S 

Captantes capti sumus 210 

Catulae Dominas imitantes vol.ii. 55 

Caudaa Pilos equkiae paulatim evellere 192 

Cedro digna locutus vol.ii. 128 

Certa sunt paucis 116' 

Chamaeleonte mutabilior vol.ii. 171 

Chius Dominum emit vol. ii. 9 

Cibum in Matellam ne immittito 12 

Citius quam Asparagi coquuntur vol. ii. 102 

Citra Arationem, citraque Sementem 129 

Citra Pulverem 129 

Clavam extorquere Herculi vol.ii. 127 

Ccenare me doces -r* vol. ii. 95 


IKDEX. 229 


Cognatio rnovet Invidiam vol. ii. 67 

Conscientia mille Testes 337 

Contra Sfimulum calces 69 

Contra Torrentem niti vol. ii. 91 

Cor ne edito 7 

Corinthiari - vol. ii. 154 

Comix Scorpium rapuit 26 

Coronam quidem gestans caeterum Siti perditus 26l 

Corrumpunt Mores bonos Colloquia prava 236 

Corycanis auscultavit voL ii. 89 

Crambe bis posita, Mors 101 

Crehl vel Carbone notare 123 

Croesi Pecunioe ter unciam addere 38 

Cui placet obliviscitur, cui dolet meminit 154 

Cum Lacte Nutricss 163 

Cum Larvis luctari 47 

Cumini Sector 247 

Cura esse quod audis vol. ii. 129 

Currus Bovem trahit -;.' - 160 

DATE mihi Pelvim * vol. ii. 6& 

Davus sum non CEdipus 109 

De Asini Umbra 71 

De Calceo solicitus, at Pedem nihil curet vol. ii. 210 

De Fiece haurire 2l6 

De Filo pendet 207 

De Fructu Arborem cognosce 211 

De Fumo disceptare 72 

De Lana cnprina 71 

ii. V Delphiaurn 

230 INDEX. 


Delphinuai natare doces, vel Aquilam volare 9* 

Deraulcere Caput vol. ii. 55 

De mortuis nil nisi bonum 47 

Den tern Den te rodere vol.ii. 35 

Deorum Cibus est 186 

De Pilo pendet 207 

Destitutus Ventis Remos adhibe vol. ii. l62 

De te Exemplum capit vol.ii. 145 

Dies adimit ^Egritudinem vol. ii. 18 

Difficilia qoae pulehra 246 

Difficilius est sarcire Concordiam quam rumpere 24-7 

Digitum noft porrexerim 67 

Dignum Patella Operculum 232 

Dii Laneos Pedes habent 242 

Dimidium facti, qui benc cepit, habet 45 

Dimidium plus toto 257 

Divitis Servi niaxime Servi vol. ii. 147 

Dives aut iniquus est, aut iniqui hrercs 199 

Dolium volvitur vol, ii. 156 

Dos est magna Parentuin Virtus vol. ii. 181 

Duabus sedcre Sellis 151 

Dulce est miseris Socios habuisse Doloris vol. ii. 194 

Dolcis inexpertis Culturu potentis Amici vol. ii. ISO 

Duos insequens Lepores, neutrum capit vol. ii, 101 

Durum ct durum non faciunt Murum vol.ii. 72 

EANDEM tumlerc Incudem 2l6 

Ejusdem Farinae l6l 

Elephantus non capit Murem 207 

Elephantem ex Musca facis , 208 




Emere inalo quam rogare 67 

E multis Paleis paulura Fructus 56 

Emuncta? Naris Homo 141 

Eodem Collyrio mederi omnibus vol. ii. 114 

Equi et Poetae alendi mm saginandi vol. ii. 130 

Equus Sejauus 244 

E quovis Ligno non fit Mercurius vol. ii. 24 

Et meum Telum Cuspidem habet acuminatum 59 

Etiamsi Cato dicat vol. ii. l6\ 

E tardigradis Asinis, Equus non prodiit vol. ii. 45 

Eum ausculta, cui quatuorsunt Aures 65 

Ex eodem Ore calidum et frigidum effkire 177 

Exigit et e Statuis Farinas vol. ii. 64 

Exiguum Maluin ingens Bonum vol. ii. 2t> 

Ex Harena I'uniculum needs 10.9 

Ex Pede Herculem 214 

Ex Quercubus ac Saxis nati 189 

Extra Lutum Pedes habes 57 

Extra Telorum Jactum 81 

Extra Scopum jaculare 224 

Extremis Digitis attingere 215 

Ex Umbra in Solem 57 

Ex uno omnia specta 57 

FABARUV Arrosor vol. ii. 169 

Facile quum valemus, recta Consilia .ZEgrotis damns 138 

Facilius sit Nili Capnt invenire vol. ii. 219 

Fama; laboranti non facile succurritur 176 

Fames et Mora BHem in Nastim copciunt vol. ii. 46 

Q 2 Felix 

23* INDRX. 


Felix Corinthus, at ego sim Teneates vol. ii. 144 

Fenestram vel Januam aperire 83 

Fervet olla, vivit Amicitia 111 

Festina, lente 244 

Festucum ex alterius Oculo ejiccre 144 

Ficum cupit 274 

Ficos dividere 243 

Ficus Ficus, Ligonem Ligonem vocat 275 

Fidelius rident Tuguria 77 

Figulus Figulo invidet 44 

Flamma Fumo est proxima 97 

Flet victus, Victor interiit vol. ii. 131 

Fluvius cum Mari certas 213 

Fcenum habet in Cornu 33 

Koines ipsi sitiunt 167 

Fortes Fortuna adjuvat 46 

Fortuna nimium quern favet, Stultum facit 76 

Fortuna obesse nulli contents est semel vol. ii. 1 14 

Frigidam Aquam effundere 228 

Frons Occipitio prior 42 

Front! nulla Fides 260 

Frustra habet qui non utitur vol. ii. 45 

Frustra Herculi vol. ii. 35 

Fucum facere 121 

Fuere quondam Milesii vol. ii. 197 

Fuimus Troes 202 

Funem abrumpere nimium tendendo 127 

Furari Litoris Arenas vol. ii. 50 

Furemque Fur cognoscit 287 


INDEX. 233 


Callus in suo Sterquilinio plurimum valet vol. ii. 159 

Gall-urn habeas Amicum non Vicinum vol. ii. 179 

Gutta Fortunae prae Dolio Sapientiae 129 

Gutta cavit Lapidem 65 

HABET vol. ii. 119 

Habet et Musca Splenam vol. ii. 93 

Harena sine Calce 2So 

Ilarenae mandas Semina 90 

Hie Funis nihil attraxit 200 

Hinc illae Lachryma? 26"4 

Hirundinem sub eodem Tecto ne habeas 14 

Hodie nihil succedit vol. ii. 1?0 

Homines frugi omnia recte faciunt 269 

Homo est Bulla 2STI 

Homo longus raro sapiens 56 

IGNAVIS semper Feriae sunt vol.ii. 29 

Ignem ne Gladio fodito 8 

Ignis, Mare, Mulier, tria Mala 264 

Illotis Pedibus ingredi 203 

Jmi Subsellii Viri vol. ii. 109 

Incidis in Scyllam, cupiens vitare Charybdim 95 

Indignus qui illi Matellam porrigat 132 

Injuriae spretae exolescunt SO 

Inexplebile Dolium 224 

Incudi reddere 131 

Inimicus et invidus VicinorumOculus vol.ii. 96 

In Acre piscari vol. ii. 53 

Insanus, medio Flumine queeris Aquara 212 

Q 3 Illj 

234 INDEX. 


Illi Mors gravis incubat, qui notus nimis omnibus 

ignotus moritur sibi vol. ii. 84 

In Annulum, Dei Figuram ne gestato 15 

In Aqua vel in Saxis Sementem facis ^ 90 

In caducum Parietem inclinare vol. ii. 37 

In Coelum jaculare vol.ii. 69 

In eburna Vagina plumbeus Gladius 162 

Inest et Formicas sua Bilis vol. ii. 93 

In Flammam ne Manum injicito vol. ii. 98 

In Herba esse 272 

In Laqueos Lupus 166 

In Mare venari vol. ii. 53 

In Mari Aquam quasris 212 

In Nocte Consilium 258 

In Portu navigare 24 

In Quudrum redigere 217 

In Re mala, Animo si bono utare, adjuvat vol. ii. 96 

In se descendere 143 

In sola Sparta expedit senescere vol. ii. 145 

In Sylvam Ligna ferre l6S 

In Saltu uno duos Apros capere - vol. ii. 101 

Inter indoctos etiam Corydus sonat 273 

Inter Malleum et Incudem 16 

IntraTelorum Jactum < 82 

Intra tuam Pelliculam te confine 145 

In tuo Regno es 166 

In Vado esse 24 

In Vino Veritas 156' 

In vita Minerva 20 

In utramvis dormire Aurem 175 


INDEX. 235 


Ipse semet canit vol. ii. 27 

Iracundior Adria - 220 

Ira brevis Furor 154 

Ira omnium tardissime senescit 154 

Irritare Crabrones 26 

JACTANTIUS raoerent qui minus dolent vol.ii. 158 

Jejunus raro Stomachus vulgaria temnit, vol. ii. 183 

Jungere Vulpes, aut mulgere llircum 110 

Juxta Fluvium Puteum ibdit vol.ii. 48 

Brachio 37 

Laterem lavas .91 

Latet Anguis in Ilerba 87 

Latum Unguem 110 

Laudatur et alget vol.ii. 176 
Laureum Baculum gesto 

Leberide caecior 74 

Lentiscum mandere 179 

Leonem stimulas 27 

Leonem ex Unguibus estimare 214 

Leonem Larva terres 133 

Leporis Vitam vivit TO!, ii. 155 

Lingua Amicus vol. ii. 77 

Lingua bellare vol. ii. 56 

Lingua non redarguta vol. ii. 78 

Lingua, quo vadis ? 257 

Li tern parit Lis, Noxa item Noxam parit 195 

Lucri bonus est Odor ex Re qualibet vol. ii. 104 

Lucrum malum aequale Dispendio vol. ii. 97 

Q 4 Lucrum 

236' INDEX. 


Lucrum Pudori praestat vol. ii. 105 

Lumen Soli mutuum das ]68 

Lupi ilium priores viderunt 1/3 

Lupus Pilum mutat non Mentem vol. ii. 42 

Luscus Convitia jacit in caecum 274 

Lyd i us Lapis, si ve Heracli us Lapis *- 130 

MAGIS gaudet quam qui Senectam exuit vol. ii. 108 

Magis magni Clerici, non sunt magis Sapientes 165 

Magister Artis, Ingeniique Largitor Venter 99 

Magistratum gerens, audi et juste et injustk vol. ii. 165 

Magistratus Virum indicat *- 339 

Magis mutus quam Pisces 115 

Mala ultro adsunt vol. ii. 144 

Male parta, male dilabuntur 171 

Malis mala succedunt vol. ii. 114 

Malo accepto, Stultus sapit -^ * - 18 

Malo Nodo malus quzerendus Cuneus 36 

Malum Consilium Consultori pessimum vol.ii. 87 

Malum bene conditum ne moveris 27 

Malum Munus vol. ii. .149 

Malum Vas non frangitur vol.ii. 147 

Mandrabuli More Res succedit -^51 

Manibus Pedibusque -^- 84t 

Manliana Imperia * * 240 

Manum non verterira 67 

Manum de Tabula -* 102 

Manus Manum fricat -r- ]9 

Massiliam naviges - vol. ii. 199 

Mature fias senex, si diu velis esse senex 52 

MaturaSatio sacpe decipit, sera semper mala est 206 

INDEX. 237 


Meclice, cura te ipsum vol. ii. 214 

Mendacem memorem esse oportet' vol. ii. 1 

Mendico ne Parentes quidem Amici sunt vol. ii. 136 

Messe tenus propria vivere 100 

Merx ultronea putet 201 

Alinutula Pluvia Imbrem parit 64 

Minuit Prassentia Famam vol. ii. 124 

Mitte in Aquam, hoc est aufer e medio vol. ii. 212 

Molli Brachio 37 

Mons cum Monte non miscebitur - 45 

Mordere Labrum vol. ii. 108 

Mors omnibus communis vol. ii. 140 

Mortui non mordent vol. ii. 210 

Mortutnn flagellas 106 

Mortuus per Somnum vacabis Curis vol. ii. 118 

Mulier turn bene olet, ubi nihil olet vol. ii. 73 
Multa novit Vulpes, sed Felis unum magnum 112 

Multa cadunt inter Calicem supremaque Labra 94 

Multas Amicitias Silentium diremit 249 

Multa; Manus Onus levius reddunt vol. ii. 9 

Multae Regum Aures atque Oculi 35 

Multis Ictibus dejicitur Quercus 186 

Multos in summa Pericula misit 

Venturi Timor ipse Mali vol. ii. 203 

Munerum, Animus optimus est vol. ii. 169 

Muris in Morem vol. ii. 100 

Mustelam habes 55 

NAM tuaRes agitur Paries cum proximus ardet vol. ii. 102 

Naribus trahere 251 




Naturam expellas Furca, tamen usque recurret vol.ii. 42 

Ne ad Au res quiclem scalpendas Ociom est 277 

Ne .iEsopum quidem trivit vol.ii. 31 

Ne cuivis Dextram injeceris 5 

Nee quovis Ligno Mercurius fiat vol. ii. 24 

Ne Gladium tollas Mulier vol. ii. 25 

Ne gustaris quibus nigra est Cauda 4 

Ne Hercules quidem adversus duos 1 l6 

Ne in Nervum erumpat vol. ii. 36 

Ne Jupiter quidem omnibus placet vol. ii. 143 

Ne Malorum memineris 254 

Nee Oboluin habet unde Ilestim emat 70 

Ne prius Antidotum quam Venenum vol. ii. 157 

Ne quid nimis 148 

Ne Sus Minervam 19 

Ne Sutor ultra Crepidam 21 

Ne Verba pro Farina vol.ii. 29 

Necessitas Magistra vol. ii. 183 

Neglectis uremia Filix innascitur Agris vol. ii. 54 

Nemini fidas nisi cum quo prius Modium Salis 

absumpseris 248 

Nemo me impune lacessit 60 

Nemo sibi nascitur vol. ii. 172 

Neque Mel, neque Apes 137 

Neque natare, neque Literas vol. ii. 32 

Nequicquam sapit qui sibi non sapit 136 

Nervis omnibus 85 

Nescis quid serus Vesper vehat 152 
Nil actum reputans, si quid superesset agendum, 

vol. ii. 152 

Nihil ad Fides 118 


INDEX. 239 


ad Versum 117 

Nihil de Vitello vol. ii. 153 

Nimia Familiaritas parit Contemptum 49 

Nocte latent Menda? 171 

Noctua inter Cornices 119 

Noctua volavit 29 

Nocumentum Documentum 107 

Noli Equi Denies inspicere donati vol. ii. 168 

Non attingere Scopum 224 

Non bene imperat, nisi qui paruerit Imperio - 15 

Non cuivis Homini contingit adire Corinthum 82 
Non esse Cupidum Pecunia est, non esse emacera 

Vectigal 77 

Non est e Terris mollis ad Astra Via 247 

Non estejusdem et multa, et opportuna dicere 6l 

Non est miht cornea Fibra vol.ii. 33 
Non est Rernedium adversus Sycophantse Morsum 

vol. ii. 33, & 185 

Non incedisper Ignem vol.ii. 117 

Non omnes possumus omnia vol. ii. 6l 

Non omnis fert omnia Tellus vol. ii. 6l 

Non progredi est regredi vol.ii. 174 

Non statim decernendum vol. ii. 118 

Non sunt Amici qui degunt procul 249 

Non tarn Ovum Ovo simile 110 

Non unquam tacuisse nocct vol. ii. 199 

Non uti libet, sed uti licet, sic vivimus 181 

Nosce te ipsum 146 

Nosce Tempus 169 

Novacula in Cotem 17 


240 INDEX. 


Nuces relinquere 108 

Nulla Dies sine Linea 84 

Nullus illis Nasus est 141 

Nullus sum 70 

Num vobis tinniebant Aures vol. ii. l6 

Nunc tuum Ferrum in Igni est vol. ii. l6Q 

OBTIU'DKRE Palpum vol. m 100 

Occasio facit Furein vol. ii. 75 

Occultze Musices nullus Respectus 172 

Oculus dexter mihi salit -< vol. ii. 16 

Oderint modo metuant vol.ii. 51 

Ocli memorem Compotorem 225 

OditCane pejus et Angue vol. ii. 52 

Odium Vatinianum 275 

CEstro percitus . vol.ii. 44 

Oleo tranquilior 220 

Oleum Camino addere 37 

Oleum et Operam perdere 105 

OletLucernam 142 and 170 
Olitorem odi qui radicitus Herbas excidat 'vol. ii. 103 

Ollae Amicitia 111 

Omne ignotum pro magnifico est 50 

Omnes attrahens ut Magnes Lapis 164 

Omnes sibi melius malunt quam alteri 80 

Omnia bonos Viros decent vol. ii. 53 

Omnia idem Pulvis - l6l 

Omnem movere Lapidem 85 

Omnium Horarum Homo 78 

Opera Sylosontis ampla Regio 242 


INDEX. 24rl 


Oportet Testudinis Carnes aut edere, aut non edere 229 

Optimum aliena Insania frui 280 

Optimum Condimentum Fames vol. ii. 43 

Optimum non nasci 282 

Optimum Obsonium para Senectuti vol. ii. 81 

Orci Galeam habet vol. ii. 58 

Ovem Lupo commisisti 83 

PALINODIAM canere 204 

Palpo percutere vol. ii. 120 

Pannus lacer vol. ii. 8 

Pariter Remum ducere vol. ii. 162 

Par Pari referre vol. ii. 167 

Parturiunt Montes, nascetur ridiculus Mus 198 

Patriag Fumus Igni alieno luculentior 39 

Paupertas Sapientiam sortita est 99 

Pecunias obediunt omnia 75 

Pennas incidere alicui 160 

Percontatorem fugito, nam idem garrulus est 14- 

Perdere Naulum vol. ii. 233 

Pergnccari vol. ii. 122 

Per Ignem incedis vol. ii. 116 

Pingere sub Gladio vol. ii. 155 

Piscator ictus sapit 19 

Pluris est unus ocufatus Testis, quara auriti decem 

vol. ii. 36 

Poeta nascitur non fit vol.ii. 188 

Polypi Mentem obtine 34. 

Post Festum venisti 203 

Praemonitus prsemunitus 280 


42 INDEX. 

vol. ii. 
vol. ii. 
vol. ii. 




16' I 




Praestat habere acerbos inimicos, quam eos 

Praestat invidiosum esse quam miserabilem 

vol. ii. 
vol. ii. 
vol. ii. 

Principium Dimidium totius 
Priusquam Callus iterum cecinerit 

Prospectandum vetulo latrante Cane 

vol. ii. 
vol. ii. 
vol. ii. 

Pulverem Oculis effundere 
Qujfc dolent ea molestum est cbntingere 

vol. ii. 

vol. ii. 

vol. ii. 
vol. ii. 
vol. ii. 

Quam quisque norit Artem, in hac se excrceat 
Qui bene conjiciat, Yatem hunc pcrhibeto 

Quicquid in Buccam, vel in Linguam vcncrit 

Quid Coeco cum Speculo 

Quid nisi victis Dolor 

vol. ii. 



Qui jacet in Terra, non liabet unde cadat vol. ii. 37 

Qui Lucerna egent, infuiulunt Oleum vol.ii. 193 

Qui nescit dissimulare, nescit regnare vol. ii. 150 

Qui nimis p rope re, minus prospere --- 245 

Qui non litigat Cselubs est vol. ii. 132 

Qui Nucler.m esse vult, Nucem frangat oportet 

vol. ii. 47 

Qui vital Molam, vital Farinam - vol.ii. 79 

Quarta Luna nati - 30 

Quod alibi diminutum, exequatur alibi vol. ii. 6'l 

Quod de quoque Viro et cui dicas, saepe cavcto vol. ii. 185 
Quod in Corde sobrii, id in Lingua ebrii 156 

Quod licet ingratum est, quod non licet acrius erit 2(>3 
Quod non Opus est, Asse carum est vol. ii. l60 

Quod procedere non potest recedit vol. ii. 174 

Quod quis Culpa sua contraxit, majus malum vol. ii. 125 
Quod supra nos, nihil ad nos 139 

Quo seme! est imbuta recens servabit Odorein Testa 

din - vol. ii. 14 

Quoniam id fieri quod vis non potest, 

Id velis quod possis -- vol. ii. 207 

Quot Servi tot Hostes 273 

RADIT usque ad Cutem vol.ii. .91 

Rara Avis 250 

Rebus iiv adversis facile est contemnere Mortem 

vol.ii. 206 

Red ire ad Nuces 309 

RefricareCicatricem ; - 141 

Refricare- Memoriam 141 


244 INDEX. 


Refutantis Laudem immodicam - vol. ii. 58 

Rem Acu tetigisti - vol. ii. 18 

Remis Velisque - - - 85 

Reperire Rimam - vol. ii. 66 

Reperit Deus Nocentem vol. ii. 54 

Res in Cardine est - 16 

Res indicabit 17 

Rore vixit More Cicadas vol. ii. 159 

etiam est Holitor valde opportuna loquutus 132 

Saepe etiam Stultus fuit opportuna loquutus 133 

Salem et Mensam ne praetereas - 134 

Salem lingere - - vol.ii. 106 
Sapientes portant Cornua in Pectore, Stulti in Fronte 

vol.ii. 131 

Sapientum octavus - - - " 188 

Sat cito si sat ben - - 245 and vol. ii. 185 

Satius estlnitiis mederi quam Fini 45- 

Satius est recurrere quam currere male 21 1 

Sat pulchra si sat bona - POP 

Saxum volntum non obducitur Muscho vol. ii. 92 

Scindere Glaeiem - vol. ri. Qft 

Segnius Homines bona quam mala sentiunt -- 154 

Semper tibi pendeat Hamus - 20t 

Senem juventus pigra Mendicum creat - 52 

Senis mutare Linguam ; 53 

Septennis quum sit.nondum edidit Denies - 256 

Sequitur \'er Ilyemem vol. ii, l6 

Sera in Fundo Parcimonia 256 

Sero Clypeum post Vulnera - 46 


INDEX. 245 


Sero sapiunt Phryges 18 

Serpens ni edat Serpentem, Draco non fiet vol. ii. 78 
Si juxta claudum habites, subclaudicare disces 233 

Simia Simla est, etiamsi aurea gestat Insignia 153 

Simile gaudet Simili 43 

Similes habent Labra Lectucas 231 

Simul sorbere et flare, difficile est 271 

Sincerum est nisi Vas, quodcunque infundis acescit 

vol. ii. 15 

Sine Cortice nalare 181 

Sine Pennis volare haud facile est vol. ii. 99 

Spartam nactus es, lianc orna vol. ii. 23 

Spem Pretio emere vol. ii. JO 

Sponde, Noxa est praesto 149 

Stultum est timere quod vitari non potest 280 

Stultus qui, Patre occiso, Liberos relinquat 229 

Stultus semper incipit vivere vol.ii. 68 

Stylum vert ere 123 

Stia Munera mittit cum Hamo vol.ii. Ill 

Suam quisquc Homo Rem meminit vol. ii. 20t 

Sub Cultro liquit vol.ii. 6'0 

Sub omni Lapide Scorpius dormit 86 

Sublata Lucerna nihil interest inter Mulieres vol. ii. 72 

Sum bonus et frugi 26'9 

Summis Labris 215 

Summis Naribus olfacere 216' 

Summum Jus, summa Injuria 221 

Suo Jumento Malum accersere 2<j 

Surdo Canis 92 

Sustine et abstine - vol.ii. 40 

vou II. u Suum 

46 INDEX. 


Suum cuique pulchrum 38 

Suum cuique Decus Posteritas rependet 50 

Sylosontis Chlamys 241 

TACITUS pasci si posset vol. ii. 127 

Talpa cascior 74 

Tanquam Argivum Clypeura abstulerit, ita glo- 

riatur vol. ii. 44 

Tanquam meum Nomeu vol. ii. 211 

Tanquam Suber vol. ii. 100 

Tanquam Ungues Digitosque suos vol. ii. 18 

Taurum toilet qui Vitulum sustulerit 48 

Te cum habita 145 

Te ipsum non alens, Canes alis vol. ii. 27 

Tempus edax Rerum vol. ii. 14 

Tempus omnia revelat vol. ii. 13 

Terram video vol. ii. 222 

Tertius Cato 187 

Testudineus Gradus vol. ii. 99 

Thesaurus Carbones erant 198 

Thus Aulicum 69 

Timidi Mater non flet vol. ii. 172 

Timidi nunquam statuerunt Trophoeum vol. ii. 30 

Timidus Plutus . vol. ii. 112 

Tollenti Onus auxiliare, deponenti nequaquam 10 

Toto Coelo errare 25 

Toto Pec tore 85 

Trochi in Morem vol. ii. 171 

Tua Res agitur Paries quum proximus ardet vol. ii. 102 

Tuis te pingum Coloribus vol. ii. 151 




Tunica Pallio propior est 81 

Turdus ipse sibi malum cacat 25 

Turpe silere vol. ii. 214- 

Turtura loquacior 111 

Tuum tibi narro Somnium vol. ii. 47 

VEL casco appareat 189 

Velocem tardus assequitur 169 

Vclut Umbra sequi vol. ii. 107 

Venter obesus non gignit Mentem subtilem vol. ii. 208 

Ver Hyemem sequitur vol. ii. l6 

Verbura Sapienti vol. ii. 211 

Verecundia inutilis Viro egenti vol. ii. 39 

Veritatis simplex est Oratio 79 

Veterem Injuriam ferendo, invitas novam 103 

Viam qui nescit ad Mare 163 

Vicistis Cochleam Tarditate vol. ii. 99 

Vino vendibili suspensa Hedera nihil Opus vol. ii. 21 

Virtutem etSapientiam vincunt Testudines 159 

Virum improbum vel Mus mordeat 189 

Vis unita fortior 113 

Vita Mortal! um brevis vol. ii. 114 

Volam Pedis ostendere vol. ii. 168 

Vox et Preterea nihil vol. ii. 149 

UBI Amici, ibi Opes 68 

Ubi Mens plurima, ibi minima Fortuna 76 

Ubi quis dblet ibi et Manum frequens habet 2o"2 

Ubi tres Medici, duo Athei vol. ii. 202 

Ultra Vires nihil aggrediendum vol. ii. 110 




Ululas Athaenas portare 38 

Urabram suam metuere 26 1 

Una Domus non alit duos Canes 44 

Una Hirundo non efficit Ver 174 

Undarum in Ulnis vol. ii. 170 

Unico Digitulo scalpit Caput 178 

Ungentein pungit, pungentem Rusticus ungit vol. ii. 67 

Unus Vir, nullus Vir 117 

Usque ad Aras Amicus vol. ii. 65 

Usus est altera Natura vol. ii. 172 

Ut Canis e Nilo 212 

Ut Lupus Ovem amat vol. ii. l6S 

Ut possumus, quando ut volumus non licet 181 

Ut Sementem feceris, ita et metes 184 

ZEN ox E moderator 243 


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